Florissant police offer local seniors holiday shopping safety tips

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

FLORISSANT, Mo. – Tis the season for shopping; safe shopping, that is. Florissant Mayor Timothy J. Lowery has asked police to help prepare seniors to defend themselves during a potential shopping attack.

Earlier this week, Tom Jost and Detective Jodi Chapie trained a group of seniors in safety and defense at the Florissant Senior Center. This was a free training session to help seniors learn how to be safe when out shopping in the grocery store, what to watch for when Christmas shopping at a department store, and how to stay safe when you’re in a crowd at the mall or a holiday function.

“We care more about the individual’s safety than we do about their stuff,” Jost said. “When it’s all said and done, things can be replaced; people cannot.”

Jost, an international defense instructor, says that it is important for senior shoppers to stay alert and be aware of there surroundings at all times. He understands the toll age can have on the body, so he provides realistic tactics seniors can use to scare predators away using body language.

Jost and Detective Chapie advise seniors to observe their surroundings, verbally confront persons who appear to be following them store to store, practice using a personal weapon of choice, avoid direct physical contact, and if someone does happen to aggressively approach you — use your voice.

“Simply raising your hands and loudly saying ‘no’ is usually enough to scare away predators,” Chapie said. “You may look silly in the moment but if it prevents an attack and keeps you and your belongings safe, that’s a win.”

Chapie also encourages seniors to do their best to get a detailed description of the perpetrator to help police find them as quickly as possible.

Have fun shopping this holiday season, but more importantly, stay safe.

About FOX 2 News

FOX 2 and KPLR 11 in St. Louis cover the news in Missouri and Illinois. There are over 68 hours of live news and local programming on-air each week. Our website and live video streams operate 24/7. Download our apps for alerts and follow us on social media for updates in your feed.

President Harry Truman said: “It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.” That spirit is alive and well at Fox 2. Our teamwork is on display each and every day.

Our news slogan is: “Coverage You Can Count On.” We quite frankly are too busy to worry about who gets the credit. Our main concern is serving the viewer.

We go where the stories take us. Whether it be Washington, D.C when a Belleville man opened fire during a congressional baseball game practice or to Puerto Rico where local Ameren crews restored power after more than 5 months in the dark.

Coverage You Can Count On means “Waking up your Day” with our top-rated morning show. From 4:00 am-10:00 am we are leading the way with breaking news. But our early morning crew also knows how to have some fun! Our strong commitment to the communities we serve is highlighted with our Friday neighborhood shows.

Our investigative unit consists of three reporters. Elliott Davis focuses on government waste, Chris Hayes is our investigative reporter, and Mike Colombo is our consumer reporter. They work in unison with the news department by sharing resources and ideas.

We continue to cover breaking news aggressively and relied on our seasoned journalists to make a difference with the stories we covered. The shooting of Arnold Police Officer Ryan O’Connor is just one example of that. Jasmine Huda was the only reporter who had exclusive access to the O’Connor family during his amazing rehabilitation in Colorado.

Last, but certainly not least, FOX 2 and KPLR 11 are committed to covering local politics. We host debates among candidates and have the most extensive presidential election coverage. Our commitment to politics isn’t just during an election year. We produce two political shows that air every weekend.


Latest News

More News