LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Family members are not the only ones wanting to open the gifts under your tree.
Angelina County Sheriff Capt. Alton Lenderman said no one should be surprised when he says that theft cases are up around the county.
"It is a proven fact that during the holiday season, crime does pick up," Lenderman said.
That includes everything from store robberies to home and vehicle break ins.
In the past few weeks, stores across the region have been hit, and in one scary case, a person fled from a home in a car after being chased out of a house investigators say he broke into.
Lenderman said it is easy to protect yourself if you're hitting the roads for the holidays.
"It's called target hardening," Lenderman said.
That includes everything from making sure someone you trust can pick up your mail, leaving a light on, and using all locks to secure the inside of your home.
"Make it look like there is some activity going on," Lenderman said. "Don't make it obvious that you have shut down everything, and there is nothing going on."
And once all those gifts are open and are inside your home, one of the things many people forget is to not advertise what your favorite relative got you.
"A thief drives by and he see that Winchester cardboard box that came from that rifle you got for Christmas is in," Lenderman said. That's almost like advertising, 'Oh they got the stuff at their house.'"
Lenderman said doing all of this could keep the merry in your Christmas.