Monday, July 1, 2013

KL Crime - snatch theft attempt

Whoever dares to tell us that, the rising crime rate in KL city is:
  • Just a perception; or
  • Being hyped by media; or
  • Used for gaining political mileage; or
  • Being seriously taken by the authorities …

either must be crazy or have not fell victim, yet.

Last Sunday, I experienced a snatch theft attempt first hand. On the busy Jln. Tun Razak road, I was riding my good old bike after making some purchases are Berjaya Times Square. As I rode along the Indonesian Embassy, I sensed another bike approaching fast on my right and felt a tug on the back of my neck. Somehow, in a quick reflex I held my gold chain and held it hard. The chain snapped and remained in my grip; I looked up and saw a lone local man, speeding away on his bike. A few meters away, he turned around and looked at me, probably getting a good look at the intended victim of his failed attempt for the day. I managed to note his registration number, and etched it hard in my memory.

I put the chain in my pocket and tried to give chase, however my 15 year old bike is no match for his. I continue to ride until GH, to see if he’s around. Then, I made a turn back to Jln. Tun Razak police station to make a police report on the incident. I related the incident in detail and gave them the registration number used, which turned out to be a false number. At the end of the report, the officer at the desk asked me : “what’s the purpose of this report?”, I was puzzled with such a question. He asked again, to which I answered : “maybe for your statistics?”. I got the copy of the report and headed home, after posting the incident on social media.

While riding home, I was reflecting:
  • When was the last time I remember of any police road blocks near my place? – more than 3 years ago!
  • Do I see any police presence doing beat patrol duty on bike in places where many crimes have been reported? – not many! A hawker at market related that, every week there’s a snatch theft along the roads, but no action.
  • The culprits are daring, they don’t target ladies only.
  • The culprit must have been doing this often, and left uncaught.
  • Why the authorities don’t increase their presence, improve their intelligence, have more local knowledge and know what’s happening around them?
  • There were increased number of police recruits, but I don’t see them around. Do you?
  • Some politicians are making statements on how safe our cities are, but do they dare walk/ride alone like us?
  • What if the culprit kicked my bike when he grabbed the chain? – I’d be writing this on the hospital bed, if I’m fortunately alive!
There were many friends called or messaged me to ask about the incident, and some of them have either fell victim to or witnessed snatch theft recently. Every time a survey or findings on our city’s crime rate is published, the authorities and politicians are quick to rebut those claims, but normal people like us feel those numbers are not going down. I wonder how many more people will have to become victims of snatch theft, worse if there’s injury or even death. What will they say / do then?

Until conditions improve (fingers crossed), take care of yourself and belongings. If you witness any such crime, take note of the details of the culprits. If can make a citizen’s arrest (only if it’s safe). 

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