During operations in the past week, the City of Cape Town’s enforcement agencies has made 389 arrests and issued 58 574 fines for various transgressions. One of them was caught on the big screen, in the act of stealing a big screen.
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In the past few months, the topic of implementing more effective crime combatting strategies has become a buzz and is raised quite frequently. And of course, Minister of Police General Bheki Cele is constantly in the firing line, as South Africans keep on “peppering” him to address the alarming crime across the country.
However, thieves in Cape Town should actually brace themselves, as the City’s law enforcement agencies are coming for them.
According to the City’s Metro Police Department, 157 arrests were made in the past week and 4 678 traffic and by-law fines were also issued. In addition, among these charges were possession of drugs, contact-related crimes, firearm-related crime and driving under the influence of alcohol, reports the City.
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Recently, three motorists were arrested for drunk driving, after motor vehicle accidents that they were involved in were captured on CCTV cameras, which resulted in first responders being activated.
The City said that CCTV cameras also led officers to a suspect who was found in possession of allegedly stolen jewellery in the CBD, and on Thursday, 18 August, a CCTV operator raised the alarm as they spotted an individual in Bellville, opening a white bakkie, removing a television set and placing it in another vehicle. The suspect was arrested and detained at Bellville SAPS on a charge of theft.
The City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, Alderman JP Smith, put emphasis on the crucial role that technology plays in combatting criminal activities.
‘The incidents mentioned are a reminder of the crucial role that technology plays as a force multiplier, and expanding our visible policing net. It is for this reason that the City is continuously investing in technology that can help us deliver more effective policing, and ensure safer communities, to complement our efforts on the ground. Apart from the ongoing CCTV expansion, we are also looking to finalise our eye in the sky soon, as well as more dashboard cameras for our enforcement vehicles, but also body cameras for staff members,’ said Smith.
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The Law Enforcement Department made 175 arrests and issued 3 273 by-law notices in the past week. Their Traffic counterparts arrested 57 motorists, with 49 drivers under the influence of alcohol; and 8 for reckless and negligent driving.
They also issued 50 623 fines for various traffic violations, impounded 119 public transport vehicles and executed 1 446 warrants of arrest.
Meanwhile, the Public Emergency Communication Centre recorded 1 538 incidents between Friday, 19 August and Sunday, 21 August. However, motor vehicle accidents have increased from 40 to 46, compared to the weekend before, and 18 pedestrian-vehicle accidents, up from 12 during the previous reporting period, according to the City.
Furthermore, call takers also logged 107 assault cases and 18 domestic violence reports.
According to crime statistics released on Friday, there was an alarming jump in the number of violent attacks against women and children.
“Our PECC consistently records more than a dozen calls related to domestic violence, weekend after weekend. In one of the latest incidents, our Metro Police officers arrested a 39-year-old woman for assault on a 13-year-old girl in Macassar,” added Alderman Smith.
The suspect allegedly tried to evade officers, but she was eventually arrested on a raft of charges, including assault GBH, child abuse, contravention of a protection order and resisting arrest.
Smith condemned the incident by stating: “It is unacceptable that people are not safe in their own homes, and so very often, policing this type of violence is incredibly difficult, because it happens behind closed doors and relies fully on victims speaking up. Many don’t, because they don’t believe that the system will support them.”
City of Cape Town wants more policing power and fully-fledged force