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Crime Free Programs

Crime Free


655 East Third Street
San Bernardino, California 92415

(909) 387-3700

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The Crime Free Programs are a, state-of-the-art, crime prevention programs designed to reduce crime, drugs, and gangs in rental and business properties. This program was successfully developed at the Mesa Arizona Police Department in 1992. The International Crime Free Programs have spread to nearly 2,000 cities in 44 U.S. states, 5 Canadian Provinces, Mexico, England, Finland, Japan, Russia, Malaysia, Nigeria, Afghanistan, and Puerto Rico. Australia has expressed interest in adopting the program.

The programs consist of several phases that must be completed under the supervision of the local sheriff’s station. Property managers and owners can become individually certified after completing training in each phase and the property becomes certified upon successful completion of all phases.

The anticipated benefits are reduced law enforcement calls for service, a more stable cliental base, and reduced exposure to civil liability

  Crime Free Multi Housing


The Crime Free Multi Housing Program is a partnership between the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, property managers/owners, landlords and residents, working together in a cooperative effort to foster a safer community in rental properties.

The sheriff/police are part of the community and have a vital interest in the well-being of the residents, but they cannot be totally effective without the involvement of property managers and residents.

The Crime Free Program is designed to help residents, owners and managers of rental property, keep drugs and other illegal activity off their property.

By taking proactive steps to abate crime, you enhance the quality of life for tenants; making a safer and more pleasant environment to live, work and raise families.

Participating in the Crime Free Program does not imply there is no crime on the property; it means properties are taking steps to deter crime and have consequences when tenants are involved in illegal activity in and around the property.

  How the Program Works


The program utilizes a unique three-part approach to crime prevention, designed specifically for the rental community. Crime in our community is on the rise and the criminals responsible are transient. They move easily from one apartment complex or Mobile Home Park to another, both decreasing the value of your property and jeopardizing the security of your community. The San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department's Crime Free Multi-Housing program provides you with the resources to make a change.  By joining this coalition of landlords, managers, property owners, and law enforcement, you will complete phases towards making your property a safer living environment for your residents. The San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department currently has over 700 complexes county-wide actively participating in the program.

The program is divided into 3 phases and is facilitated by a member of your local law enforcement agency. The San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department's Public Affairs Division- Special Project Unit is responsible for managing the county wide program and providing training to both the managers and agency facilitators.

  Phase I


The first phase is a multi-faceted approach that offers property manager training. This course will cover requirements of the program, tools to combat illegal activity on the property, crime prevention and much more. The manager certification will be good for a period of two years.

Classroom Instruction Includes:

  •  Introduction to the Crime Free Lease Addendum
  • Learning the eviction process
  • Establishing fair screening
  • Learning your legal rights and responsibilities
  • Improving your working relationship with law enforcement

The second part of Phase I is to implement steps in deterring illegal activity by utilizing the following required tools:

  •  Terms of Programs Registration & Agreement
  •  Crime Free Lease Addendum
  •  Use of portable crime deterrent signs 

Phase I Benefits

  •  Managers receive certificate of achievement for completing online training
  •  Property will be listed on the SBCSD Department Web site as Level One participant
  •  Use of Crime Free logo

  Phase II


Additional property staff is required to complete the training (to include assistant managers, leasing agents and maintenance staff).

The property must meet the landscaping requirements of CPTED (Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design), which improves visibility on the property. We use a minimum standard for complex security that can reduce criminal activity and immediately improve the safety of your complex. Staff from you local law enforcement agency will complete the landscape inspection at your property

Establish a method of communication with property residents, either by e-mail, newsletter or Web site.

Phase II Benefits

  •  Level Two certificate for property
  •  Staff will receive certificate of achievement upon completion of training
  •  Preliminary CPTED evaluation
  •  Property will be listed on the SBCSD Department Web site as Level Two participant

  Phase III


In this level, properties must meet the requirements of CPTED -- locks and lighting.  This is the last level required for a property to become fully certified in the Crime Free Program. We use a minimum standard for complex security that can reduce criminal activity and immediately improve the safety of your complex. Staff from you local law enforcement agency will complete the landscape inspection at your property. After passing CPTED your property will be authorized to order Crime free Multi-Housing signs.

A Tenant/Mangers meeting is scheduled to bring managers, tenants and local law enforcement together to inform tenants on the Crime Free Multi-Housing program. A final certificate is issued showing the property has completed all phases of the program.

Phase III Benefits

  • Level Three certificate
  • Property will be listed on the SBCSD Website as a fully certified property
  • Use of Crime Free signs on property -- Must be purchased by property (optional)


  Costs of Criminal Activity


When criminals operate out of a rental property, neighborhoods suffer and landlords pay the price. That price may include:

  • Decline in property value
  • Property damage from neglect or abuse
  • Increase risk of civil liability
  • Added fear of respectable tenants
  • Valued tenants move due to crime
  • Loss of rental income due to eviction or property repair

  Benefits to Landlords


  • Improved property values
  • A stable tenant base
  • Improved property reputation
  • Lower maintenance costs
  • More secure rental units
  • Safer exterior environment
  • Reduced premise liability


For more information on the Crime Free Multi Housing program or if you would like to get your property started, please contact your crime prevention officer.

  Crime Free Managers Training Dates


Crime Free Multi-Housing Manager’s Training is designed for property owners, managers and staff to learn to work with law enforcement to create a safer living environment for residents. All property staff are welcome to attend!

The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department will be hosting four Crime Free Multi-Housing Manager’s Training Classes this year. The classes are from 8am to 5pm at the following locations:

Wednesday, March 14, 2018 at the Apple Valley Station

Wednesday, June 6, 2018 in Rancho Cucamonga

Wednesday, September 12, 2018 at Victorville City Hall

Wednesday, December 12, 2018 at the Yucaipa Station


Please notify the Public Affairs Division at (909)387-3700 to confirm your attendance.

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