Cri­me sur­ge in pe­a­ce­ful P­lett neig­hbour­hood

Knysna-Plett Herald - - News | Nuus - Yo­lan­de S­tan­der yo­lan­de.grm2@gmail.com

P­let­ten­berg Bay cri­me fig­h­ters ha­ve in­ten­si­fied ef­forts in the to­wn’s Poor­tjies a­rea af­ter a se­ries of cri­mi­nal acti­vi­ty in the u­su­al­ly tran­quil neig­hbour­hood o­ver the past week.

Sin­ce F­ri­day, Ju­ly 7, se­ver­al incidents ran­ging from vehi­cle b­re­ak-ins to bur­gla­ries we­re re­por­ted.

The first hap­pe­ned du­ring the e­ar­ly mor­ning hours of F­ri­day w­hen sus­pects bro­ke in­to a vehi­cle in S­try­dom S­treet at a­bout 04:00. Va­ri­ous i­tems in­clu­ding a soft brief­ca­se we­re sto­len and la­ter re­co­ve­r­ed by re­si­dents in the bus­hes be­hind a pro­per­ty in Su­san S­treet.

Ac­cor­ding to the P­let­ten­berg Bay Cri­me P­re­ven­ti­on As­so­ci­a­ti­on (PBCPA), at a­bout 20:00 on the sa­me day the­re was a burglary at a ho­me in Su­san S­treet. The sus­pect es­ca­ped through a bushy field and fled the a­rea o­ver the N2. So­me of the sto­len goods we­re drop­ped whi­le fleeing and re­co­ve­r­ed by aut­ho­ri­ties.

The fol­lo­wing mor­ning, at a­bout 01:00, in­tru­ders we­re spot­ted on a pro­per­ty in Pla­to Ro­ad but jum­ped o­ver a fen­ce in­to a neig­hbou­ring pro­per­ty. Va­ri­ous PBCPA mem­bers re­spon­ded al­ong with ADT, lo­cal law en­for­ce­ment mem­bers, P­lett Se­cu­ri­ty, P­lett Wa­tch vo­lun­teers, Pri­me Se­cu­ri­ty and Sm­hart Alarms.

An in­ten­si­ve se­arch of the a­rea was con­ducted but wit­hout success.

At a­bout 04:00, law en­for­ce­ment of­fi­cers ho­we­ver ar­res­ted a sus­pect who had va­ri­ous hou­se and car keys as well as re­mo­te con­trols, in his pos­ses­si­on. The o­ri­gin of the keys is still being de­ter­mi­ned.

Ot­to Olivier, PBCPA o­pe­ra­ti­o­nal he­ad, said that it has be­co­me ap­pa­rent that cri­mi­nals are en­te­ring and ex­i­ting the Poor­tjies a­rea through an o­pen field ne­ar P­let­ten­berg Bay P­ri­ma­ry S­chool.

“T­he­se guys know ex­act­ly w­he­re the a­rea’s ca­me­ras are and t­hey are de­li­be­ra­te­ly a­voi­ding them to gain access to the a­rea un­de­tected,” Olivier said.

He ad­ded that whi­le aut­ho­ri­ties re­gu­lar­ly do pa­trols in the a­rea, o­pe­ra­ti­ons ha­ve been bol­ste­red o­ver the past week.

He said that the PBCPA is al­so wor­king on up­gra­ding a­bout four ca­me­ras, which in turn would in­cre­a­se the co­vera­ge in the a­rea.

The PBCPA con­t­rol room is al­so un­der­going a re­vamp, he said, which would e­na­ble it to add mo­re ca­me­ras to their o­pe­ra­ti­ons.

Olivier cau­ti­o­ned that re­si­dents in the a­rea should be vi­gi­lant and re­port any sus­pi­ci­ous be­ha­vi­our.

He al­so war­ned re­si­dents a­gain not to le­a­ve any i­tems in their vehi­cles as this in­cre­a­sed the risk of be­co­ming a tar­get for t­he­se cri­mi­nals. “Pe­op­le still le­a­ve t­hings in cars li­ke GPSs and ot­her va­lu­a­bles. We need to chan­ge this be­ha­vi­our in or­der to success­ful­ly stop t­he­se cri­mi­nals.”

Olivier said that re­si­dents, w­he­re pos­si­ble, should al­so park their vehi­cles in­si­de their pro­per­ties or in their ga­ra­ges at nig­ht.

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