Stop ‘showing off’ cash at events – Police warn
June 28, 2024

Stop ‘showing off’ cash at events – Police warn

Pick-pocketers working in teams, jewellery snatchers, theft, burglaries and armed robberies, are some of the concerning trends the police say they are working to put a stop to during heightened periods of activity, particularly around Carnival time.

Law enforcement is highlighting a practice which they say is making persons potential victims of crimes and are calling on members of the public to beware.

Police Sergeant, Stephen Billy, who is also a member of Crime Prevention Committee said ‘showing off’ with large sums of cash is a dangerous practice.

“We recognize that around Carnival time people have a tendency of showing off, especially when they are returning Vincentians who are coming from different places like the Army or sailing, or been overseas for a while. They love to brandish their cash… failing to realize that there are persons who are criminals and criminal-minded.”

His comments came during a Cop Chat programme on WEFM as part of the Royal St Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force’s (RSVGPF) Crime Prevention Week of Activities.

Sergeant Billy also spoke to the practice of removing large sums of cash from Automatic Telling Machines (ATM’s), and not being vigilant when conducting transactions.

“People are coming out of the ATM with cash in their hands; they leave the [ATM] booth which is fairly secure and the glass is a little bit dark ,and people are taking more money than they actually need at the time for whatever reason, and they come out and push their money in their wallet. We are telling people to be more conscious of their environment- look around. As you go into the ATM, scan the area to see who is looking at you. Take descriptions of their facial features, body-build, tattoos, what they are wearing and when you come out, scan the area again.”

He said the RSVGPF has also recognized that those who engage in pick-pocketing are working in teams, and members of the public are making it easy for them by having their valuables exposed when moving around in Kingstown and at Carnival events.

“…when you come into Kingstown, or wherever you have these shows, we are telling you to be careful how you secure your wallet. Men love to wear them in their back pockets, females love to have their cellphones dangling in their back pockets, or the bag is open and you can see all the contents, and somebody can easily walk up behind you and remove your cellphone. And because these guys usually work in teams, somebody bump into you and say sorry, and somebody already gone with your phone or your wallet.”

Sergeant Billy added that the goal is to also sensitize visitors about these trends so that they do not fall victims.

“For the visitors as well, we are advising you that you have a responsibility as well in the way they carry themselves and the way to act. We are also advising you to be careful where you go and who you go with. You can’t just meet somebody in the road and think that all is well. Yes, we are a peaceful people … but some in between there are hell bent on committing crimes.”

The annual Police National Crime Prevention Week of activities wraps up today, Friday June, 28 with the exhibition at the Central Police Station in Kingstown.