Dial 911 for Emergency

Dover Police Shoplifter Notifications Begin Next Week 8-4-2014

Update:   Beginning the week of August 11th, the Dover Police Department will display shoplifting arrest information on its website and social media platforms.  Shoplifters who are apprehended from August 8th until August 14th will be in the first release, scheduled for August 15th.

Overview:                                                                                                                                       Since 2011, the Dover Police Department has investigated 2,773 shoplifting cases, averaging 2.5 per day. In an effort to help reduce the amount of shoplifting cases, the department will begin a weekly notification displaying the names and booking photos of those arrested. The goal of the notifications is to notify Dover merchants of offenders in hopes of being able to reduce the number of shoplifting cases. The majority of shoplifting cases are committed by repeat offenders and the department’s goal is that by releasing the information, store employees will be better informed when monitoring their stores and inventory, and suspects will think twice before stealing merchandise in fear that their name and photo will be shared with the public.
By The Numbers:
It is a common misconception that shoplifting only affects the business that was stolen from and is a petty crime. This idea could not be further from the truth. In the United States, more than $13 billion in merchandise is stolen every year; that’s more than $5 million per day. The costs of the loss and the stores increased security measures get passed on to consumers, directly affecting the incomes of honest people.
In Dover, there have been 2,773 shoplifting cases reported to the police in the last 3 years, with 920 of those coming in 2013. Some studies have shown that shoplifters are only caught 1 in 48 times. Combine those numbers with the incidents not reported to police and it’s clear that shoplifting has become a consistent problem in the City of Dover. Department’s using similar shoplifting arrest notifications have seen cases drop as much as 10% in the 1st year of the program. The feedback from merchants and the public in those respective jurisdictions has been very positive and the results can be directly tied to the notification program.
The Drug Problem:
It is the belief of the Dover Police Department that a large amount of shoplifting cases can be connected to illegal drugs. Many shoplifters are stealing goods because they have spent their income on illegal narcotics or are selling/trading the stolen goods to purchase illegal drugs. By declining the number of shoplifting complaints and displaying the suspects, the department hopes that it will also have an effect on illegal drug activity in the City of Dover.

The Notifications:
The department will release a photo similar to the one below on a weekly basis. This photo will be posted on the department’s website (www.doverpolice.org) and social media outlets as with all other press releases. In fact, the image is essentially another form of a traditional press release. As with any arrest, shoplifting arrests and booking photos are public information and the defendants should be considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

finalshoplift warning

Who Gets Posted?
In short, ANYONE who is 18 and over will be posted. Regardless of the dollar amount, store, or reasoning, every adult shoplifting suspect arrested will have their photo and name released. Juveniles WILL NOT have their information or photos released.

Goals of the Program:
1-The primary goal of the program is to reduce the amount of shoplifting cases in the City of Dover.
2-To notify Dover merchants of shoplifting suspects so they can more efficiently monitor their store and inventory from the intelligence they will now receive. Merchants will now be able to know what stores a suspect has stolen from, providing the ability for merchants to share information with each other in an effort to reduce loss.
3-Lessen the ability of suspects to sell/trade stolen goods for illegal drugs or money. By sharing this information, merchants, pawn shops, secondary markets (auctions/flea markets/online classifieds), and the general public will be aware of the possibility that items they purchase may have been stolen.
4-Prevent the growing price of goods directly affected by the loss a merchant incurs from shoplifting. These costs are frequently passed on to the honest consumers.
5-Identify suspects in other criminal cases. Many times, shoplifting suspects are involved in other illegal activities. By sharing their booking photo and names, it is possible that they can be identified as suspects in other cases by other law enforcement agencies, merchants, and the general public.
6- Lessen the amount of time officers spend on these complaints to focus their patrol efforts in other areas and on other crimes.

The 1st release of shoplifting suspects will begin in the month of August. The department will provide announcements through their website and social media outlets ahead of the 1st release in order to give suspects fair warning of the new program.

-Cpl. Mark Hoffman, Public Information Officer



Woman Arrested After Stabbing Boyfriend 8-4-2014

Incident #: 50-14-20116      Date/Time:  Saturday, August 2, 2014 at 7:48AM

Location: Unit Block of N. Governors Avenue, Dover, DE

A Dover woman was arrested Saturday morning after stabbing her boyfriend in the hand.  Officers responded to the Unit Block of North Governors Avenue at approximately 7:48 am and discovered the male victim bleeding from an injury to his hand.  The victim advised he was stabbed by Carla Heath (48) during a verbal disagreement.  Heath also struck the victim in the face prior to the stabbing, and took the victims cell phone in an effort to prevent him from calling for help.  The victim was transported to Bayhealth Kent General Hospital where he was treated for the wound and later released.  Heath was taken into custody at the scene without incident, but was found in possession of a glass pipe typically used for smoking crack cocaine.  Heath was committed to Baylor Correctional Center on $22,000 secured bond.

Officer Releasing Information:  Cpl. Mark Hoffman, Public Information Officer

Carla Heath
Age: 48

Assault 2nd Degree
Theft under $1500.00 (Victim 62+)
Possession of Drug Paraphernalia
Malicious Interference with Emergency Communications
Offensive Touching


National Night Out Event Information

In just one week the Dover Police Department will once again bring the National Night Out to the Target parking lot on Tuesday, August 5th from 6-8pm.  The event brings the Dover Police Department, along with several emergency agencies and military personnel to one place where the public can bring their families to meet and greet local heroes and see the equipment used in their jobs while forming a positive relationship with the community.  In addition to appearances and demonstrations by these agencies, Night Out will feature fun activities for all ages along with food and beverages for all while supplies last.  The Dover Police Department and Target Department Store look forward to continuing the National Night Out tradition and their relationship to improve the Dover community through events such as this and the Heroes and Helpers Christmas program.  The National Night Out  gives us the opportunity to show our citizens what we do, the vehicles and equipment we use, and really gives people that attend a sense of pride in their emergency responders.  It is an opportunity for communities nationwide to promote police-community partnerships, crime prevention, and neighborhood camaraderie. While the one night is certainly not an answer to crime, drugs and violence, National Night Out represents the kind of spirit, energy and determination to help make neighborhoods a safer place year round. The night celebrates safety and crime prevention successes and works to expand and strengthen programs for the next 364 days.  The event gives us the ability to connect with people on a personal level, in a positive environment outside of the typical situations people tend to interact with us.  Kids can try on gear that officers wear, sit on a police motorcycle, put out a fire with the Dover Fire Department, and much more.  A new addition to this year’s event will be the inaugural Dover Police vs. Dover Fire Night Out Challenge where teams of 3 will compete in a rock wall relay race for the Mayor’s Cup at 7pm.  There will also be K9 demonstrations at 6:30PM and 7:30PM.  We are excited to put on this event once again and look forward to many families visiting us on August 5th.


  • FREE Bounce House/Slide and Basketball game Courtesy of BK Rentals
  • FREE Rock Climbing Wall Courtesy of Vertical High
  • Eagle 97.7 LIVE Broadcast
  • McGruff the Crime Dog
  • Free Popcorn*
  • Free Grotto’s Pizza*
  • Free Drinks*
  • Dunk a Cop in the Dunk Tank
  • Delaware State Police Helicopter (Weather/Schedule Permitting)
  • Dover Police Department Vehicles (Dodge Charger/Chevy Tahoe)
  • Dover Police Department Crime Scene Investigations Truck
  • Dover Police Department Motorcycle Unit
  • Dover Police Department Crisis Negotiation Truck
  • Dover Police Department Bearcat (Armored Truck)
  • FREE Child ID Kits
  • Dover Police Department K9 Officer Barrett and K9 Britt Bite Demonstration
  • Dover Air Force Base Security Forces Vehicles and Display
  • Dover Air Force Base Fire Department Vehicles and Display
  • City of Dover Fire Department Vehicles and Fire Activity for Children
  • Little Creek Fire Department Bay Rescue Boat
  • Little Creek Fire Department HazMat Truck
  • Leipsic Fire Department Ambulance
  • Delaware Crime Stoppers Display
  • Delaware Army National Guard Display and Games
  • and more….
    *while supplies last