Increase in car theft a concern

2018-09-18 06:00

Residents have raised concerns about ongoing theft of and from motor vehicles in the area. Several vehicles have either been reported missing or have been broken into, in recent weeks.

Residents are now calling on the police to patrol the area daily and to monitor any suspicious-looking people in the area.

“We can’t even step out of our cars for a minute, only to find that it has been broken into. I don’t think it is fair. We work hard for our belongings for someone else to just come and take it,” explains Fuad Morris of 5th Avenue.

“Parking our vehicles on our premises doesn’t help either, as these suspects jump over our walls to break into our cars. Many of them (suspects) are either drug addicts or not from the area.”

Another resident, Lisa Manuals, adds: “Some of our local car guards are also guilty and work together at times. They monitor our movement when going into shops and then send hand signals to other individuals guarding our cars. This happened to me.

“When we ask them (car guards) what happened, then they are either nowhere to be found or say they don’t know anything. These are the same suspects who steal, go to jail and then come out to do the same crime. They get away with everything while the innocent have to suffer.”

Sergeant Zita Norman, spokesperson of Athlone Police Station, confirmed there has been an increase in the theft of motor vehicles over the past two weeks.

“We noted a crime trend from Saturday 1 September to Friday 14 September in several roads.

“Some of the roads that have been targeted include Klipfontein, Plettenberg, Claude, Heideveld, Mabel and Bosduif roads, Cornflower and Temple streets, as well as Aden Avenue and Topaz Court.

“These incidents occurred during a certain time frame which is either early morning or midnight. We urge the community to park their vehicles in their driveways or in their garages, and to not leave any vehicles parked in the street overnight.

“We also want residents to ensure that all the doors of the vehicle are locked and the alarm is activated. Residents should also not leave any valuables in the vehicle which could encourage the activity of vehicles being broken into,” she adds.

Athlone police have increased their patrolling plan in the affected areas and encourage the community to report any suspicious-looking people and vehicles in their streets on 021 697 9238/39.

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