To play a part in fighting crime, accurate and detailed descriptions of criminals can go a long way towards securing their arrest. That’s according to a local private security company, who announced a series of refresher workshops that they would be arranging for community and neighbourhood watches.“Security companies and law enforcement agencies need to have an accurate description of the suspect to assist them in tracking down the perpetrator,” says ADT Security’s District Manager (Cape Town North) Verena Hulme.Hulme points out that there are a number of important facts that people must keep in mind to assist police help solve crimes if they become victims. “If you become the victim of a crime, don’t make direct eye contact with the perpetrator, make mental notes of what the person is wearing, and be as precise as possible. This includes logos, colours, and any other distinguishing marks,” says Hulme.“Victims should also be aware of how the criminals spoke. Was there anything striking about the way they spoke? Did he/she speak with a lisp, or with an accent? Also be aware of any distinguishing facial features, tattoos or scars.” Hulme says victims should also note details of vehicles. “If there was a getaway vehicle involved, what make/ model/colour was it? Did you see the number plates or any other distinguishing features such as mag wheels or scratch marks?”Hulme adds that the company presents regular workshops and information sessions to the community watches they support, where they run training sessions on the provision of accurate reports. Similar workshops are also presented for domestic workers and other community interest groups. “Becoming a victim of crime is understandably a scary and traumatic experience, and one’s first instinct is not always to be calm and observant. We believe however that with some coaching this can be changed. Being observant of your surroundings is the key. If you are attentive to any possible risks, there is the likelihood of avoiding them,” she says. “Equally, if you are able to provide police or your security company with as much detail as possible of the perpetrator, it will help law enforcement agencies in identifying the suspect and hopefully quickly putting them behind bars.”V Organisations who are interested in hosting a workshop can email Martin ten Brink at Mtenbrink.firstname.lastname@example.org.