Top cop gives holiday tips

2015-12-15 06:00

Wynberg police warn that they will not tolerate fireworks over the festive period, especially on Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.

Brigadier Riaan Booysen, commander of Wynberg police station, says the public must remember that it is illegal to use fireworks in a residential area.

“The public must also know that it is illegal to purchase fireworks from shops that do not have the necessary permits. The shop owners who are caught selling the products illegally will be dealt with accordingly,” he says.

He urges the public to avoid drinking in public places, which includes parks and any public open spaces.

“We will ensure that there is visible policing at public open spaces, especially in Church Street and on the Main Road, during this festive period to deter criminal activity and antisocial behaviour,” he says.

He also warns that there has been an increase in theft out of cars, robberies and burglaries. These specific crimes occur mostly between 06:00 and 09:00 and noon and 19:00.

“We urge the public to be on high alert at bus stops and taxi stands and in subways and thoroughfares where most of the robberies have been reported to have taken place, while theft out of cars occur mostly in the Main Road and surrounding streets and parking lots,” Booysen says.

He further warns against informal car guards who should not be trusted as there has been reports of people giving them something and being robbed at the same time.

Motorists are also advised not to leave anything visible in their cars as it creates a lure for criminals to break into the car.

“I also want to warn people from supporting prostitutes as there have been cases where people who do support them have been robbed,” Booysen says.

Better help for homelessHe further urges the public not to give money or other items to homeless people, but to rather give to local organisations dealing with homelessness.

“We further have had many cases of money scams reported where a person will offer to keep your handbag and to purchase goods for you on discount.

“The perpetrator will then tell you to choose what you want while another perpetrator is keeping your belongings, such as your shopping and handbag. Then on your return from the store your belongings are all gone,” he explains.

Booysen adds that people need to guard their belongings to have a safe festive season.

“Families must remember to be on alert at all times, especially when at home.

“Put away expensive goods you have bought throughout the festive season and do not make it visible in your homes where people can see it from the road,” he says.

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