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Frequently Asked Questions
This section is intended to be an informational resource for some of the more common questions the Police Department receives.  Click on any of the questions listed below for their answers:
When should I call 911?
How do I report a crime?
Can I report a crime anonymously?
How do I file a police report?

What do you do if you are the a victim of a crime?
How can I prevent being victimized?
How do I get a copy of a Police report?
How do I apply for Permits?

How do I deal with harassing phone calls?
How do I find out if sex offenders live in my area?

How do I contact the Chisago County Animal Control?

When should I call 911?
Dial 911 only when appropriate. In non-emergency situations 911 should not be dialed. An emergency would consist of a life threatening situation or a possible life threatening situation such as an assault (fight), a domestic situation that is either verbally or physically threatening, robbery, missing child, fire, crime in progress, serious injury or an emergency medical situation (such as choking, heart attack, unconsciousness, overdose, suicide attempt, etc.).

A non-emergency report would be more service oriented such as property damage accidents, non injury crashes, bad driving conduct, lost animals, found or lost property, parking complaints or general animal complaints to name a few.
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How do I report a crime?
Call the police department at 651-257-0622. If it is not an emergency please feel free to leave a message. Stay on the line until you hear the voice mail recording. If it is not an emergency but you really need to see an officer in a timely manner please dial 651-257-4100, which is the Chisago County Dispatchers office. The dispatcher will contact the on duty officer by radio. In an emergency please dial 911.  
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Can I report a crime anonymously?
Yes, in fact the Minnesota data practices is worded to favor keeping a complainants name and identifying information confidential or private.  When calling it is important to ask if your name can be kept confidential.  If not then you need to decide whether or not to chare the information.  Obviously there are some instances in which the complainants information must be shared, so ask up front.

Law enforcement needs information to succeed, if you can share information and your name please do so. 
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How do file a police report?
Many times filing a police report is as simple as doing the above things. The person you are talking to will generally ask for your name, date of birth, address and phone number. This is information we need to keep track of the case. You may remain anonymous if you request to be under certain circumstances. Many times an officer will ask for a written statement from the witness to a crime or the victim of a crime, which could be mailed or brought into the Police Department. Although some reports may be taken right over the phone, many times an officer needs to make face-to-face contact with the complainant or victim of an event.
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What do you do if you are the a victim of a crime?
If you are a victim of crime, immediately report it to the police department at 651-257-0622.  If it is not an emergency but you really need to see an officer in a timely manner please dial 651-257-4100, which is the Chisago County Dispatchers office. The dispatcher will contact the on duty officer by radio. In an emergency please dial 911. Then use the following helpful tips to prevent yourself from being re-victimized.

If your keys were taken

Change or re-key whichever locks need to be changed for your protection.

If your checks or credit cards were taken

  • Notify your bank or credit card company if you have not already done so, and have them change the account number.
  • Then call the three credit reporting bureaus to report the loss, and ask them to put a FRAUD ALERT on your account so NO NEW CREDIT will be issued without contacting you. This is especially important if any form of identification was also stolen at the same time.
    Credit Reporting Bureaus:
    Experian: phone 1-888-397-3742 or online at www.experian.com
    Trans Union: phone 1-800-680-7289 or online at www.tuc.com
    Equifax: phone 1-800-525-6285 or online at www.equifax.com

If your stolen checks or credit cards have been used

  • The subsequent use of any of the stolen checks or credit cards must be reported to the police by the merchant or bank where it was presented for payment. Contact the banks and/or businesses that accepted your checks or cards to notify them of the fraudulent use.
  • Encourage the banks and businesses to pursue charges against any suspects identified. Your bank or credit card company should have you sign an affidavit of check forgery or credit card fraud, and they should reverse all of the checks/charges relating to the fraudulent transactions.

If your social security card was taken

  • Call the Social Security Administration FRAUD HOTLINE to notify them of the loss and get information on how to get a duplicate card.  S.S.A. Fraud Hotline: phone 1-800-269-0271 or online at www.ssa.gov
  • Also, notify the credit reporting bureaus listed above. Request a copy of a credit report a month or two after the theft to make sure no fraudulent accounts are being opened.

If your driver license was taken

  • Apply for a new Driverís License as soon as possible and ask them if anyone has applied for a license since yours was stolen. They can refer you to an investigator.
  • Also, notify the credit reporting bureaus and request a credit report after one month.  
  • You may also used this form to alert the license bureau your license is being used by someone other than you victimofidentitytheft.pdf.

If new checks or credit cards have been mailed to a different address

If someone has stolen your identity to get new credit

  • Call the police department at 651-257-0622 and make an Identity Theft report. In Minnesota, Identity Theft becomes a crime only when the victim (person or business) suffers a monetary loss. FTC ID Theft Hotline: phone 1-877-438-4338 or online at www.ftc.gov/idtheft/.  To report fraud to the FTC other than ID Theft, call: 1-877-382-4357
  • Also, call the Federal Trade Commission Identity Theft Hotline to notify them and get advice on how to proceed.
  • Notify all three credit reporting bureaus to put a Fraud Alert on your data and immediately request a credit report. You must then advise the credit bureau and the institution making the entry of any specific fraudulent accounts appearing on that report. That institution should send you an affidavit of account/transaction fraud to sign and return to them.

Resources for advice and information

Good News

You are NOT responsible for monetary losses. The banks and credit card companies must refund your money losses (if any), although they may hold your money while they are conducting an investigation in the case. Some can charge you up to $50 per account, but most do not.
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How can I prevent being victimized?

  • Donít put your driver license number or social security number on your checks. This makes it easy to get a false ID made.
  • Donít carry your social security card or birth certificate copy in your wallet or purse.
  • Keep all credit card receipts safe. Many criminals use numbers off receipts to defraud.
  • Safeguard your PINs (personal identification number) for all cards and accounts. Do not write them on or keep them with the cards.
  • Shred credit card offers you get in the mail. Thieves steal mail and trash to get these.
  • NEVER give your credit card number out to someone calling you. Make charges only when you call and remember, Card Fraud.  Investigators will never call and ask for your credit card number and expiration date.
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How do I get a copy of a Police report?

Copies of Police reports (text) cost 25 cents per page and are available at the Police Department. A request for information form must be filled out and then the request is considered. If approved the request must be acted on with in 5 business days. State accident reports are $15.00. Multimedia costs are assessed based on media.
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How do I apply for Permits?

Firearm Permits - Permits to purchase a firearm in Chisago City and in Lindstrom are applied for at the Lakes Area Police Department.  A questionnaire will need to be filled out, then one of our Police Assistants will gather the required background information from the state of Minnesota. If there is no information that would disqualify a person from receiving a permit, then a permit is issued. Picture ID is required and permits are generally picked up in person.
 
Winter Parking Permits - Lindstrom has winter parking permits for those people that live above some businesses in the downtown area.  Permits may be purchased for $25 by contacting Terri Taylor at Lakes Area Police Department. Parking permits are good for the winter parking months and are designed to allow Apartment renters in the downtown business area to park over night in the municipal parking lot.
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How do I deal with harassing phone calls?

Harassing phone calls in the Lindstrom and Chisago City area using Frontier telephone service:

Call Trace enables you to find the source of select incoming calls. After dialing a simple code, the origin of the call will be determined and all pertinent information will then be forwarded to the customer's local law enforcement agency. 

How Does Call Trace Work?

1. When you receive a call you'd like to trace, press and quickly release the switchhook. Then:

2. Listen for a special tone or, if you've already hung up, just lift the handset again and listen for a normal dial tone.

3. Press *57.

4. In some areas, you'll hear an announcement that the call can be traced.  Just follow the voice instructions to dial an additional code to complete the trace.

5. Listen for a confirmation announcement that the last call has been traced.

6. Hang up.

7. Call Trace must be used immediately after you hang up on the call you want traced. If you get another call or hear a Call Waiting tone first, you will trace the wrong call.

8. The traced number will only be released to the law enforcement office handling your case. Phone companies are not permitted to release a traced telephone number to customers.

Frontier Communications' customer service number is: 1-888-535-4353
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How do I find out if sex offenders live in my area?

Sex offenders are classified by the department of corrections into three levels:

  • Level 1 Ė low public risk
  • Level 2 Ė moderate public risk
  • Level 3 Ė high public risk

 Of the three risk levels, only Level 3 offender information is public information.  Level 1 and Level 2 offender information is classified as private under Minnesota data privacy and cannot be released to the public.  Additional information may be obtained at http://www.doc.state.mn.us/level3/search.asp

Public information regarding sex offenders and their classifications can be obtained from the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension at 888-234-1248 or locally at 651-793-7070.
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How do I conatact the Chisago County Animal Control?

Either call the Lakes Area Police Department at 651-257-0622 or the Chisago County Sheriff's Department at 651-257-4100.
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