Crime in the MID area fluctuates from month to month and it would be imprudent to read too much into these “trends” but at the same time the past 3 months do seem to indicate higher than usual criminal activity in the neighbourhood, and during the month of September, 4 of the 22 criminal incidents reported to MID involved aggression or violence.
This does highlight the need for heightened awareness of our own safety (and that of our neighbours) at home, in transit, and on the streets.
Awareness need not mean succumbing to paranoia! Basic security measures can easily become habits that need not constrain your lifestyle – here are some simple-to-implement examples:
- Rationalise your keyring! Many of us have large unruly bunches of keys with superfluous keys to unknown doors… Slim it down: only carry the keys that you need so that you don’t have to spend vulnerable time outside your front door hunting for the right one. Hardware stores sell handy coloured rubber covers if you need to distinguish one key from another easily.
- Check your car really is locked: If you use a remote to lock your car, lift the driver door handle before you walk away to make sure it really is locked – this is the easiest way to foil jamming devices.
- Look up, look around, look out: Pay attention to who is ahead of you and behind you while walking. If someone looks potentially suspicious listen to that instinct and take a different route, hang back, or go into a shop.
- Stash it, don’t flash it: And that includes your cellphone! Walking along while pouring over a screen is asking for trouble – not only because you have a valuable item on display, but because you are clearly unaware of your surroundings and will be taken completely by surprise by any would-be criminal.
- Look after your bicycle! As a side-note, there have been a spate of incidents involving bicycles lately, so if you own one, look after it – they seem popular at the moment…
On a sadder note, September was the month in which Gary Theron was injured, suffering severe head trauma. The ambulance services failed to arrive, and eventually a private ambulance service Cape Medical Response was called to help him – they responded with commendable haste. However, unfortunately he succumbed to his injuries and died 2 October. This lack of motivation to attend to the homeless in our community is not a once-off anomaly. Just the previous week a disabled and mentally ill man was found by the MID patrol team in Alexander road bleeding from gashes above his eye. The ambulance service failed to come that time too, eventually telephoning EIGHT hours later to enquire if the service was still required!
If you come across anyone in need of emergency assistance in our neighbourhood you are encouraged to phone MID Public Safety on 060 850 6260 to request support in dealing with the emergency situation.