Police praise street committees and community tip-offs

Table View Community Police Forum (CPF) member Rene Butzer

Staff shortages and tight budgets often handicap the police, but Table View SAPS and the community policing forum (CPF) are seeking innovative ways to boost safety in the area.

A Sector 3 CPF meeting on Thursday October 20, heard that street committees were key in curbing crime in a community.

Table View SAPS station commander, Colonel Dirk Vosloo said police had made many breakthroughs thanks to tip-offs from street committees or “the old tannies” reporting suspicious behaviour outside their window.

One such tip-off had recently helped police nab a crowbar gang (“Police swoop on crowbar gang,” Tabletalk Wednesday 21).

“Three weeks ago, an old tannie assisted the police and spotted a vehicle which hit two burglaries in Melkbosstrand and we managed to catch them on the R27, simply because she saw that something was not right,” he said.

“You have to know your neighbours and who they are so that if someone moves things out of their house in a bakkie and you know your neighbours aren’t moving, you can help. Urge your neighbours and friends to get involved.”

Colonel Vosloo said the crime stats revealed that property crime had dropped 20 percent in the past three years and was down by a further 4 percent in the latest figures. The average number of burglaries each month, he said, had dropped from 120 to 75.

“There are lots of issues in terms of resourcing, but I am proud to be the station commander in an area with massive community participation,” he said.

“There is a very good contingent of people who partake in structures and we encourage street committees to be formed. Because of partnerships with neighbourhood watch, CPF and street committees, we could bring down crime. If everyone sweeps their part of the porch or street, it will help.” said Colonel Vosloo.

He flagged east of Gie Road and Wood Drive as burglary hot spots.

Janssens Avenue, Raats Drive, close to the Absa at Bayside Mall, and the southern side of Blaauwberg Road, close to Virgin Active, were hot spots for theft out of vehicles.

CPF member Rene Butzer warned residents not to leave their bins out the night before their garbage was collected.

“The bin next to the wall is like a step ladder to get on your property, lots of weapons and knives are also left in bins.”