Is petty crime on the increase in Kirkland Street? Are criminals targeting more and more motorists and pedestrians?
A motorist is left in shock, after having his cellphone stolen on October 28, by an opportunistic criminal.
“I was driving on Kirkland Street and was close to North City. I was busy on my phone quickly and as I was putting it on my lap, a man came up to my car and grabbed it,” says the motorist, who has opted to remain anonymous.
After snatching the phone, the perpetrator ran towards the taxi rank. Despite the motorist giving chase on foot, the suspect managed to escape.
“While I was chasing him, he threw my phone down. However, while I have my phone back, it is now broken.”
Is the motorist the only victim of petty crime?
Captain Jabulani Ncube, Newcastle SAPS spokesperson, explains there has been an increase in petty crime along Kirkland Street.
These crimes, Captain Ncube explains, includes cellphone snatching, handbag snatching and theft from motor vehicles.
He says criminals are targeting both motorists and pedestrians at random. “A woman recently had her bag snatched while in a shop at Kirkland Street,” he says.
Therefore, Captain Ncube claims it is instrumental to always remain alert of one’s surroundings.
He has also encouraged motorists to avoid leaving valuables such as cellphones, laptops and cash unattended in their vehicles.
Furthermore, Captain Ncube says the Newcastle SAPS will be patrolling Kirkland Street more and keeping a watchful eye over the vicinity.
With the SAPS looking at increasing their presence in the vicinity, will this deter the criminal element?