From The Star 23 Oct 2010:
Crime rate down but cops must stay vigilant
INSPECTOR-GENERAL of Police Tan Sri Ismail Omar should be commended for urging the police not to rest on their laurels despite achieving a significant reduction in the crime rate (“IGP not at all pleased” – The Star, Oct 21).
According to the statistics provided by the police, street crime dropped by 38%, and the overall crime index by 16% between January and September.
Although no details are available, the police should be given due credit for their efforts to bring down the crime rate. The figures have also injected a dose of confidence in the public and uplifted its perception of the police.
However, to the victims of crime, the traumatic experience is not easily forgotten. The figures, no matter how impressive, will not be able to calm their nerves for a long time.
Just ask the victims. They will frown with unease when recalling the upsetting incidents. It requires a lot of courage and determination to overcome their fears.
In some cases, the victims may have been robbed twice or even more times as the perpetrators become braver when their heinous acts are not curbed by the police in time.
One can only sympathise with the victims while praying hard that they will not become the robbers’ prey again.
My family in Taman Daya, Johor Baru, encountered two frightening experiences recently.
In the first incident, three youths carrying a travelling bag sneaked into my wife’s office one afternoon while she was conducting a meeting in an adjacent room. They fled with an expensive laptop. The whole process was caught on a neighbour’s CCTV.
In the second incident, which occurred a fortnight ago, a motorcyclist and his accomplice stopped beside my wife’s car while she was parking the vehicle in the porch one night. The accomplice swung a hammer at the window on the driver’s side in an attempt to rob her.
Luckily, my appearance halted their planned criminal act and prevented further harm to my family.
To add salt to injury, no police personnel appeared at the scene to investigate or gather clues after reports were lodged at the Taman Setia Indah police station. There was no noticeable increase in patrols in the vicinity immediately or after the incidents.
I suppose this is what the top cop meant when he said he was still not satisfied with the quality of investigation. I wonder how the policemen can solve the cases by just merely taking down my statements, and without pursuing further investigations.
When the incident is brought up in the teaching fraternity of my school, the IGP should come to listen for himself my colleagues’ , spouse’s or acquaintance’s harrowing encounters. These unpleasant experiences have left indelible marks in their lives.
May I quote the IGP’s words: “We should work harder to ensure the safety and security of the people.”
The top cop’s reassuring promise can certainly dissipate the lingering worries about safety and security in our neighbourhood.
The men in blue must walk the IGP’s talk as the confidence and trust that we have in the police can only be earned through quality investigations and bringing the perpetrators to justice.
TING LIAN LEE,