Security stories that show communities working together towards crime prevention are rare, so to read three in one community newspaper is a real treat.
Crime prevention starts with alert community members
Like many South Africans, I am an avid reader of my local community newspaper and always read the page dedicated to crime in my area before moving on to the rest of the paper. This week’s round-up of criminal activity wasn’t as grim as usual and in fact, there were several issues that could have turned out very badly but didn’t because of alert, proactive people in the neighbourhood.
I was amazed at how positive these stories made me feel so I thought I’d share them with you and see if you had the same reaction.
Resident prevents vehicle theft
The first story was about a man that noticed two men parking a vehicle outside his house before getting into another one and driving off. The homeowner called his Sector Police Vehicle and the officers that arrived traced the vehicle’s owner. The owner wasn’t even aware that his car was missing! It was returned to him with slight damage but he was pleased to have it back. The SAPS were full of praise for the alert resident that reported the incident.
I was impressed not only by the resident, but by the SAPS vehicle that responded to the call and bothered to turn up and find the vehicle’s owner. It just goes to show that if you phone the right people, the right action is taken. Our SAPS regularly publishes the Sector Police Vehicle phone numbers in our local newspapers. I wonder if it’s the same in your area?
Three nabbed for attempted rape of two girls
The second story left me with mixed feelings. Two young girls at home alone were attacked by three men. Fortunately the security guard at the complex had noticed the strange men entering the home and had phoned the girls’ mother. She called her local police station and then rushed home to hear screaming coming from inside the house. The police had arrived and managed to get into the house and arrested the men. The girls were naked on the floor but otherwise unharmed.
I had mixed feelings because the girls will obviously be severely traumatised by the attack, but I’m relieved for them that they weren’t raped. Again, it was quick thinking and proactive responses that saved the girls from a worse fate. The security guard is to be commended for phoning the mother; the SAPS for reacting quickly; and the mother for taking action even in the midst of her panic.
SAPS shares crime prevention tip
The Edenvale SAPS is trying to alert local residents to crime that they can prevent by taking preventative action. They share crime prevention tips in our community newspaper, which I think is a great idea. Here is their latest one:
Residents planning to host parties are asked to ensure all property is looked after and laws are abided by. Vehicles parked in the street are not only easy targets for criminals, but are also against laws set out in the Road Traffic Act. When hosting a house party, residents are asked to contact their security providers to enquire about additional security for the night to ensure vehicles are not stolen.
Share your own crime prevention tips or stories
If you have crime prevention ‘good news’ stories, please share them with us – it’s makes such a difference to read of successes once in a while.
Contributor: Lindy Barry
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