THE?POLICE?have a text for all Barbadians.
“Beware, thieves are snatching cellular phones, jewellery and handbags, more than ever”.
Police public relations officer Inspector David Welch said up to March 5 there were 75 recorded cases of cellphones, jewellery and other items stolen from Barbadians way above the 45 recorded for the corresponding period last year.
Welch said there was a market for it, stressing that offers of cash for gold and cellphones might be fuelling this rise in criminal activity.
“It is clear there is a growing market for it and all and sundry have to be aware. We have stepped up our foot patrols in areas of concern and in districts with lonely tracks. Nearly everyone has a cellular phone and there is a growing number that wear jewellery, so no one is safe,” he said.
Welch added: “The force is clearly concerned about this upsurge in theft. There are people out there, making a living out of the sale of stolen cellphones.”
Just a few days ago, a young man, of no fixed place of abode, was nabbed by law enforcement officers on theft and robbery charges with some of these items illegally taken over a five-month stretch.
Welch told the SATURDAY SUN some of the crimes were perpetrated at bus stops when victims were off-guard.
He said thieves were making some of their attacks on beaches while bathers were in the sea.
“These culprits are targeting persons walking by themselves whether day or night, especially in lonely areas such as Belleville, Pine Road, Strathclyde and beaches such as Browne’s Beach. They like to lie in wait in areas where they are not easily detected.”
Welch said while theft was on the rise, robberies were down. Last year at this same time, there were 98 cases, but so far this year, the number stands at 74.