KNYSNA NEWS - Despite a number of property-related crimes reported between April and June 2019, according to Knysna police there is a reduction in most of these reported incidents compared to recent statistics within the same category.
However, said Knysna police spokesperson Sergeant Chris Spies, they "remain concerned about the prevalence of some of these crimes showing slight increases".
While the majority of property-related crimes has decreased, incidents involving burglary at business premises, motor vehicle theft, and theft out of or from a motor vehicle have shown slight increases.
The declining trend can be attributed to increased police patrols, Spies said, as well as improved neighbourhood watch structures and valuable input from security companies. He also pointed out areas where increases have spiked, fingering Nekkies, Khayalethu, Concordia, White Location, Smutsville, and Sedgefield as problem areas, while reports indicate the most prevalent times for incidents have been between Fridays and Mondays, 15:00 to 03:00.
Generally, according to Spies, perpetrators typically forced windows or doors open in order to gain access to premises or vehicles, while it has mostly been electronic equipment such as laptops as well as cash, cellphones, and clothing that has been stolen.
Spies shared the following tips to residents for increased safety:
An alarm system, preferably connected to an armed response company, can act as an effective deterrent. In the rural environment a siren/alarm on the roof that can be heard over a long distance and that can be activated by means of a switch/panic button in the house, is recommended. A few switches/panic buttons in different rooms of the house should preferably be installed.
Security lights on the outside of the house improve the physical protection of a house, farm or smallholding. The lights must be directed away from the house and must allow the occupants to use the windows without being observed from outside. Be aware of possible shadows and blind spots.
Ensure that doors are locked at all times, and that windows are closed when you are not at home. Large dogs serve as a deterrent. At least one dog should be trained to sleep inside the house.
If you leave your residence, inform your family/neighbours of your intended destination, time you expect to return and the route you will be driving. Ensure that tools that can be used in an attack, are locked away when not being used.
Always keep a torch nearby at night and when you use it, ensure you do not give away your position. If you are unsure about the security status of your home after returning from work/a visit, do not enter your home.
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