The transition to Level 3 has resulted in an alarming increase in incidents of crime in the area, especially in muggings. While we had anticipated an increase in criminal activity as the country eases the Lockdown restrictions, this occurred sooner than we had expected.
There have been a number of cases where residents were victims of aggravated robbery during the day. Burglaries and Theft Out of Motor Vehicles have also increased.
This alarming increase in criminal activity has been compounded by the temporary transfer of key Visible Policing resources at SAPS Sea Point to other areas of the Peninsula, and a shortage of patrol vehicles.
The GPNW has shared its concerns with Heather Tager, Chair of the Sea Point CPF. Ms. Tager and Jacques Weber, CEO of the Sea Point CID met with members of the SAPS Western Cape Command to discuss steps to address these issues.
Original Piece from the June 2020 Newsletter:
The transition from Level 4 to Level 3 has been accompanied by a significant increase in crime in the Green Point area. Particularly worrying is the increase in common robbery and aggravated robbery.
At the beginning of June, a male was assaulted, beaten and robbed of his wallet, phone and clothes during the night. The incident is believed to have happened on Main Road. Two weeks later a woman was robbed of her phone on Wigtown Road and another woman was attacked and stabbed in St. George’s Road (fortunately she was not seriously injured, and the suspect was caught and arrested.) More recently what we believe was a homeless person was attacked on Main Road.
There have been reports of break-ins, several attempted break-ins and numerous thefts out of motor vehicles (TOoMV) during the past month.
While we anticipated an increase in crime, it appears that it is happening sooner and quicker than expected.
The increase in criminal activity in the area has been exacerbated by several other factors that, combined, have created a “Perfect Storm.”
At the beginning of lockdown Colonel Engelbrecht, head of visible policing at Sea Point SAPS, and several of his senior staff were seconded to Langa. In addition, SAPS’ annual leave cycle ends at the end of June, and all SAPS personnel have to take their accrued leave before then.
Further, members of SAPS Sea Point were exposed to COVID and had to self-isolate, resulting in the station being significantly understaffed at a critical time. All of this impacted SAPS’ ability to respond effectively to some of the reported incidents.
Finally, due to vehicle breakdowns SAPS Sea Point is, we understand, down to only one working patrol vehicle; it is incomprehensible how station management allowed matters to deteriorate to this level.
Fortunately, Avenue Response stepped into the breach and responded to a number of incidents when SAPS was not available. If it were not for them then we would have been in dire straits.
The situation is unacceptable and we shared our concerns about the poor response from SAPS with Heather Tager, the Chair of the Community Policing Forum (CPF.) She and Jacques Weber, CEO of the Sea Point CID, subsequently met with Major-General Mpumelelo Manci and members of the SAPS Provincial Management Team to discuss these and other issues. They received a commitment from the Major-General that these issues would be addressed.
The GPNW will follow-up with Colonel Engelbrecht when he is back at the beginning of July to determine how he plans on addressing the lack of visible policing in the area.
In the meantime, we need to increase the number of members who are proactively reporting crime on the GPNW Radio Network, if you are a radio holder, or on the GPNW Crime & Emergency WhatsApp alert group. The more engaged members we have, the stronger we are together!