Police use #9pmroutine to help people avoid being crime victims

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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) -- Cedar Rapids police are turning to social media to help people not become crime victims.

The #9pmroutine is a nightly reminder of a few things people can do to deter criminals.

Every night at 9, the police department posts a meme, picture or status on its Facebook and twitter pages, with reminders to bring in valuables from vehicles, lock car doors and lock up homes. The police department says it's all about preventing temptation for potential criminals.

"It sounds very simple, but sometimes, we've all done it where we'll go to bed and wake-up the next morning and the garage door is up and we are like, oh no, I forgot. So yeah, just a good routine to get into every evening," said Officer Shannon Sampson.

It's still too early to see how effective the hashtag is working in Cedar Rapids, but cities across the country that have adopted the challenge have seen positive results.

Cedar Rapids Police investigated 725 thefts from motor vehicles last year, a decrease from 2017.