LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - Picture this: you are in a shopping center parking lot and three people come up to your car claiming they are in trouble and needed a ride. It happened in Little Rock and police want shoppers to know this is a tactic used by con-artists this time of year. It is the season of giving and that's why police worry that much of the crime will come from con-artists trying to take advantage of people's generosity.

“People are often approaching individuals in parking lots and asking for help or begging for certain items,” said Captain Heath Helton, Northwest Patrol Division of Little Rock Police Dept. “Con-artists are trying to use methods and con people out of money or property. We’ve had a couple instances where people have been approached at some of the shopping complexes.”

Little Rock Police say an uptick in property crime is expected this time of year. To deter crime and provide some comfort to shoppers, more marked and unmarked police are patrolling popular shopping spots.

Captain Helton recommends getting your keys out before walking to your car, holding your purse close, hiding any purchases and valuables left in your car and shopping during the day if possible.