It's that time of year again, and with Thanksgiving on Thursday, that means Black Friday is also upon us, so let the shopping begin! It's also the time of year where everyone should be very much aware of their surroundings while out shopping.

The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office will implement their 12th Annual Robbery Prevention Mobilization (RPM) "in an effort to deter crime and assist shoppers in the parking lot at the Prien Lake Mall during the holiday season which will begin November 24 and will continue through December 26, seven days a week, said a CPSO media release.

Deputies, wearing orange Sheriff's Office traffic vests, will patrol the mall parking lot on marked ATV's and patrol cars, as well as manning the CPSO Mobile Command Center located in the front parking lot of the mall on Prien Lake Road. Deputies will be on hand to assist shoppers during evening hours, with help finding their vehicle, jump starting dead batteries, and walking employees and shoppers to their vehicles after dark, and more.

“The CPSO Robbery Prevention Mobilization has always been instrumental in, not only assisting shoppers with their problems and concerns, but keeping crime to a minimum at a time of year when it is usually on the rise,” says Sheriff Tony Mancuso. “We are very pleased to be able to offer this service to the public.”

CPSO deputies are not hired by the mall and are not there to work security for the mall, they will be there to assist the public during the holiday season. The presence of law enforcement is important in deterring crime in the parking lot, said Kim Myers.

In addition to patrolling the Prien Lake Mall parking lot, deputies will also visit convenience stores thought the parish, and conduct the same service at the Southgate Shopping Center on Ryan Street and the Power Center on Highway 14.