Police issue warning: Do not stop for strangers

2017-04-12 06:02

MOTORISTS should not under any circumstances stop for strangers who try to flag them down.

This was the stern warning sent out by Port Elizabeth police last week. The warning follows recent reports of vehicle hijackings with a similar modus operandi.

According to police spokesperson, Colonel Priscilla Naidu, two people were hijacked in separate incidents in the Humewood and Algoa Park areas.

In the first incident, on April 4, 2017, the complainant, who drives a jikeleza taxi, was flagged down by a woman near Kenako Mall.

“The woman informed the driver that her brothers were waiting further down the road. As soon as the driver stopped, two men got into the vehicle and threatened him at gunpoint. The driver was taken to Perseverance where he was robbed of his cash and his Mazda 323 vehicle,” Naidu said.

In a similar incident, during the early hours of April 5, a 24-year-old man was hijacked in Strand Street in Humewood after stopping for a woman who allegedly flagged him down.

“As he stopped, two unknown men got into the vehicle and forced him to drive to a block of flats where a third person got in and a TV was also loaded in the vehicle. The complainant drove to the taxi rank and was ordered to get out and run. The vehicle, a VW Golf, was recovered in the taxi rank minus the radio and speakers.”

Naidu added that drivers should use their discretion and always be alert when driving.

“Strange behaviour by pedestrians (in these cases women) must be viewed with suspicion. Always look around when stopping at traffic lights, especially late at night or in the early hours of the mornings. Make sure that the doors are locked at all times. If surprised by the sudden appearance of someone at the window do not open the window, instead drive off. Hijackers are professionals and they plan their attacks carefully, so motorists are advised to be vigilant at all times and not to be naïve when confronted by the opposite sex.”

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