Police response to intrusive crime must improve

Recently the police were applauded for their speedy response to a cash loan raid in Kanye by armed robbers. They shot and killed one, while unfortunately a brave police officer lost his life after being wounded during the gunfire. May his soul rest in peace.

The police presence in dangerous spots such as the Old Naledi stops, the BURS neighbourhood, and other notorious spots, has not gone unnoticed. The public believe that such presence w would go a long way in deterring violent crime around the so-called hotspots in Gaborone. In fact the police have been se4en reacting to some incidents at these hotspots of late. We need more of the same.

While this latest police response is very much welcome, the public especially in Gaborone continued to be worried and disturbed by intrusive crime taking place in their homes or at public places such as malls.In one of the testimonies in Fight Crime in Gaborone, some victims report that police seem not to take burglary cases seriously. When the police is phoned, nobody answers. Often victims have to go to the police station where they are told there are no vehicles to go to the scene.In one of the touching testimonies, a victim narrates how she had to transport the police officers who upon reaching the house that was broken into by the thieves, chose to chill on the sofas, while others requested for something to drink.Those cases are numerous. Some report car break-ins only to have the police men coming after a long time, just to look around, without even writing anything down or finger printing the scene of crime.A situation whereby the job of running a fingerprint on the scene of crime is left to few experts within the police should not be allowed to continue like this. It makes the other police officers who are not crime scene experts look like dummies indeed. While the police definitely have a big role to play in reducing incidents of crime, members of the public, the community perhaps it is high time we realise that we could play a very big role in containing the seemingly spiralling crime rate if we work together as neighbours, each taking responsibility for the safety of their neighbour, coming together regularly to know one another, plan for the security of their streets, and take suspicious strangers too task. This is what is called community policing. If we choose to live our urban lives caring only about selves and not taking time to care about the neighbour(s) the consequences will always be where we are today, escalation of violent and intrusive crime in our homes.

Editor's Comment
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