Bandits on the prowl!
Understanding the Law
March 15, 2019
Bandits on the prowl!

March 4, 2019, or there about, several persons sent me a report that originated from the Royal St. Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force. It was to put the public on alert about prowling bandits who were knocking on doors looking for people to assault and rob of their money. These thieves would appear to be legitimate when they knock on doors. We all knock on doors. You may think it is an unexpected visitor. When they appear they are seeking to commit crime/crimes. First they enter your property illegally, that is trespass, secondly, they would assault or attempt to kill you, and thirdly, they could steal your property.

The boldness of these attackers is overwhelming. This is indeed a new way of enticement by luring you to get you to open your door so that they could make their illegal entrance into your home. Although the report did not disclose any crime committed, it says a lot to put people on their guard. It must be taken seriously, because there are serious implications.

The criminals cannot wait until you leave your home to enter; they want to do it in front your face. So this is not breaking in and enter, it is forced entry right in front your face. Interviews of victim by one source speaks of actions such as leaving a tap running to attract persons out of their house, to close, for instance. No one would want to see his or her dollars go down in wasted water. Going out to turn it off would give the trespasser an opportunity to assault you and enter your house in search of money. Homeowners must therefore check from a safe place to see who is knocking before opening the door.

The thieves are finding novel ways to carry out their dirty acts. The implications are many. What if the homeowner has a firearm? This is a dangerous situation. It means that legitimate visitors must notify the homeowner before he knocks on his/her door.

Theft and attempted murder are punishable under the law. They carry serious penalties of imprisonment. Our laws describe “theft as dishonestly appropriating property belonging to another with the intention of permanently depriving the other of it. The Magistrate Courts, as well as the High Court, deal with offences against the person. The more serious crimes are dealt with by the High Court and the Magistrate Court deals with the less serious crimes.

There are calls everyday for a more peaceful SVG, a country where we can return to the old practice of leaving our doors unlocked. When we look around, we can glean something about the state of crime in our country. Many houses are barricaded with wrought iron as a way of keeping the burglars out, but this does not appear to deter them. They would rip out the wrought iron from the walls. It is disturbing, for many times there is no money to grab because people try not to keep large sums of money in their houses. Yes, times are hard, but there are many healthy foods that could be obtained at a fair price. We do not have to covet our neighbours’ goods, because we do not know the hardship they had to undergo to obtain their possession. Be a good neighbour. Harm no one. Plant food in your backyard or in pots.

Heed the call, SVG. People must return to the practice of respecting other people’s rights to ownership of property. Avoid strongman tactics and criminal practices.