KZN s ees spik e in ag­gra­vated r ob­beries

Weekend Witness - - Ne Ws - JEFF WICK S

A SPATE of vi­o­lent home in­va­sions in r ecent w eeks c oin­cides with a spike in ag gra­vated r ob­bery in the prov­ince.

As man y as 21 040 in­ci­dent s of ag­gra­vated rob­bery were re­ported in KwaZulu­Natal in the 2013/2014 pe­riod with a sharp rate rise of 4,2%.

While brazen house rob­beries in­di­cate an es­ca­la­tion in vi­o­lence and force, in­di­vid­ual in­stances of bur­glary dr opped b y 4 ,2% with o ver 44 000 case s opened.

On T hurs­day a Dur ban N orth woman w as s tabbed r epeat­edly when a gang of men forced their way into her F air­way Dri ve home.

Two weeks ago, a prom­i­nent Dur­ban w ed­ding plan­ner w as gunned down in a house rob­bery gone awry.

Stephen J ohn E dmon­stone ( 62) was felled by gun­fire when he in­ter­rupted armed men w ho had f orced their w ay int o his U mgeni P ark home.

Gareth Ne­wham, head of the ISS gov­er­nance, crime and jus tice di­vi­sion said that polic e need t o f ocus on t ack­ling ag gra­vated r ob­bery.

“Rob­beries cr eate f ear and f eel­ings of in­se­cu­rit y be­cause the y in ­ volve di­rect at­tacks by armed crim­i­nals in the s treets, in homes and at places of w ork.

“The c on­tin­ued incr ease in r ob­bery means the po­lice ur­gently need to fo­cus on a co­her­ent na­tional an­tirob­bery strat­egy for tack­ling armed crim­i­nals,” Ne­wham said.

“This will re­quire the po­lice to ad­dress the prob­lems fac­ing the crime in­tel­li­gence di vi­sion that has sub­stan­tially r educed it s pr oduc­tiv­ity over the p ast t wo y ears,” he said.

Sun­cell C om­mu­nity C rime­watch head, Craig Aden­dorff, said a marked in­crease in vi­o­lence was no­table. “What we see in the statis­tics is re­flected by what’s hap­pen­ing on the ground. Home in­va­sions are be­com­ing mor e vi­o­lent … ” • je ff.wicks@wit­ness.co.za

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