Port Alfred CPF, and community, welcomes colonel Yogan Reddy, new commander for the Port Alfred detective branch
CRIME Statistics, as furnished by SAPS indicate that, year on year and by month, crime is generally down in all sectors.
The Sector Policing, Rapid Rural Response (RRR) and Community Police Forum (CPF) meetings took place at the SAPS offices on Tuesday. This is good news, but Sergeant Shaun Plaatjies who presented the crime statistics warned that residents should not become complacent as school holidays were just around the corner and this was a chance for opportunistic criminals to take advantage.
Reddy elaborated, explaining the difference between house break-ins and house robberies is that during a robbery the residents are at home, awake and being threatened, whereas house break-ins are carried out and residents don’t come face to face with the intruder .
Plaatjies reported that most of the suspects of these crimes were known repeat offenders who are currently in police custody.
Sector 2 (West Bank) is reported to have experienced a decrease in crime. According to MultiSecurity reports many of the crimes were unsuccessful. But Plaatjies added that crime seems to have shifted to businesses in sector 3A [East Bank], the industrial area. A Sector 3 policing manager is urgently needed to oversee crime mitigation management, specifically on Putt Road.
Most incidents took place during the day, and SAPS asked that residents make a habit of closing windows when nobody is home, and making certain all entrances to residences are adequately secured.
The RRR report indicated that some crimes were not reported to the police but, in response, SAPS urged the community to notify them of all incidents that happen in Port Alfred.
Captain Jacques Barkhuizen acknowledged cattle-related matters are dealt with by the SAPS, but that assistance from Traffic Control is needed in the effort to securing roads.
“We’re not hiding away, and not denying that cattle are a matter for SAPS,” Barkhuizen said. “However, the traffic Department should assist in dealing with cattle adequately.” He reported that only six fines were issued for stray cattle, or those with inadequate tags, during May.
“The quicker the council sorts out the pound, the better” Barkhuizen said.
George Galbraith, who chaired the CPF meeting, emphasised the importance of residents conducting audits of their security and safety, and to even invest in ways of improving security around residents’ homes.
“We want to focus on the public’s awareness,” Galbraith said. “We need to get it across to them that their first responsibility is regarding personal safety, and it is to themselves.”
Reddy spoke further about the importance of warning residents, especially the elderly, about scammers and fraud crimes, particularly with specific mention of internet-related scams.
“Every day I hear of something or someone being defrauded; this includes identity theft, fraudulent internet transactions, posing as selling specialised items and it all comes to a dead end,” Reddy said.
He expressed the importance of not trusting anybody at ATMs except for persons working for the banks. Furthermore, he noted on the importance of not tampering with crime scenes.
“Sometimes, when there is a crime, the complainant becomes impatient and clears the area,” Reddy said. “Evidence is lost with victims of crime tampering with crime scenes.”
Drunk driving offences were low, and a number of people were arrested for drug related crimes.