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Crime against tourists

Police in New Orleans and Orlando have created special units dedicated to protecting tourists. Officers are trained to be sociable with tourists, and the units are allied with tourism associations and organizations, according to a new problem-oriented-policing guide on tourist crime developed by the U.S. Department of Justice. Hotels and other sectors of the tourism industry in those cities are strongly encouraged to perform background checks on employees, and police urge that these staff members be heavily punished if found guilty of crime against tourists. Other jurisdictions make it easier for victimized tourists to testify against criminals; Hawaii, for example, has enacted a statute allowing victims to testify from their homes via teleconferencing. Various other measures are in use around the United States, such as creating business-improvement districts in downtown areas, and encouraging hotels to adopt practices to reduce guest victimization, including requiring guests to show identification before entering the building. Disney World uses crime prevention through environmental design techniques to protect visitors. "Virtually every pool, fountain, and flower garden serves both as a visual attraction and a means to direct visitors away from, or toward, particular locations," the guide says. cops_crimes1204.pdf