In the past week, two “follow-home” robberies occurred in Magaliessig. In each instance the victim was apparently followed back from a shopping centre and then firearms were brandished by the perpetrators who forced their way into the properties (one into a complex) after the victim. This is a serious “contact” crime and one that causes considerable personal stress to its victims. Fortunately no injuries were reported in either case. The targeted items were valuable jewellery and electronics such as cellphones.
In this type of robbery, it is probable that the victim being resident in Magaliessig was not relevant. The victims would probably have been followed home regardless of which suburb they lived in.
Nonetheless, MAF warns residents to:
- avoid wearing or brandishing expensive jewellery or watches when out and about,
- be extra careful when returning home from shopping centres in particular,
- keep a continual lookout for vehicles following you,
- not approach your gate until you have established, as best you can, that nobody has been following you.
If you do think you are being followed, go to a secure place which has camera surveillance and a security presence; ideally a police station but failing that, a filling station or major shopping centre.
Note: MAF security camera project subscribers and TRSS home security clients have the option of arranging with TRSS for a “meet and greet” service if they are uncertain about their security when arriving home, especially late at night. This service is free of charge and is only available to those subscribers or clients – another good reason to join up and subscribe now to the camera project.
We have been asked whether the cameras were useful in these two follow-home robberies. Regrettably, two cars driving in tandem into the suburb is commonplace and this was not in itself suspicious enough to raise concerns.
Yet more regrettably, due to the financial apathy exhibited towards the camera project by most residents, we have not been able to install the remaining phases of the system. We have therefore been forced to accept large gaps in our camera surveillance coverage. The additional cameras would have enabled near blanket coverage including the locations where the incidents occurred. Indeed, due to the financial constraints, several streets presently have no coverage at all. This means that right now even if an alarm is raised, criminals and their activities cannot be monitored nor can their movements be continuously followed all around the suburb. Without those extra cameras, the control room operators’ effectiveness is severely reduced, the deterrent effect is diluted and video evidence useful to prosecute and convict offenders is not captured.
With the deteriorating economic climate and consequential job reductions, crime is, or will be, on the increase everywhere. We, in this suburb are not immune to that fact. We must do everything we can to deter criminals from operating with impunity in our community.
A functional and complete camera surveillance system is one such deterrent – a major one according to security experts. Affording a dedicated, linked patrol vehicle directed by the camera observers will raise the response rate and considerably enhance that deterrent. To implement these deterrents we urgently require much greater commitment of financial support from all residents — support that until now has been disappointingly weak.
We again appeal to all residents and business owners in Magaliessig, who have not already done so, to sign up and contribute towards making our suburb a safer one for us all. Don’t wait until your own home or complex security is breached. Help us to head off criminals before that happens to you or your neighbours. Don’t leave it to your neighbours and other residents to provide protection for you. Help us to provide a layer of deterrents and protection for everyone in this suburb including you and your neighbours!
Subscription, including membership of MAF is only R100 per month. An application and debit order form can be downloaded here. Subscribers may also commit to pay monthly by EFT if they wish. Complex residents should urge their Home Owners Association to negotiate a bulk deal and include the cost in their levies.
Every incident in Magaliessig is an incident too many.
MAF: Working for a cleaner and safer suburb.
Issued by Magaliessig Action Forum, NPC.
Contact: Chairman: Mary Hanna,