Car wheel thieves descend on Sauerstown
2012 August 20 08:07:20 | 2542 Views
A gang of daring thieves in Bulawayo descended on Sauerstown suburb and stole car wheels from at least seven houses on Thursday night, the Chronicle reported.
Residents woke up on Friday morning to find their vehicles balanced on bricks with two wheels missing from each of the cars.
Acting police spokesperson for Bulawayo Assistant Inspector Bekimpilo Ndlovu could only confirm four cases saying the others may not have been reported.
According to residents, the gang struck at five houses along Charlotte Crescent, one at Alma Road and another at Bafil Road. All the victims said they did not hear any noises when the thieves struck.
A number of them said they were tennis shoe prints in the yards of their homes, which they believed belonged to the thieves.
"I was stunned to find my car balanced on bricks, with two wheels missing as I was rushing to go to work. I stood in helpless anger. A few minutes later, I heard my neighbour screaming. The same fate had befallen him," said a man who declined to be named.
His neighbour said police told him that five people had each been robbed of two tyres from their vehicles along the same road.
Another of the victims said there could be more thefts as his cousin from Alma Road told him that he had also been robbed.
"There are also rumours that the thieves stole from Bafil Road. I think there are a well coordinated syndicate that needs to be stopped," he said.
Contacted for comment, Asst Insp Ndlovu said only four people reported the thefts.
"We only received four cases where criminals were stealing car wheels in the Upper Sauerstown area. Two of the reports were from Charlotte Crescent, one from Bafil Road and another from Alma Road," said Asst Insp Ndlovu.
He said the crime appeared to be new and police were closely monitoring events.
"Already, deployments have been adjusted to combat the new wave of crime. We are not zeroing in on the affected area, but covering the whole city," he said.
Asst Insp Ndlovu urged people to put marks on their tyres and rims to make it easy to identify, when police recovered them.
"Our intelligence tells us that the wheels are being resold and as such, we strongly discourage people from buying property from people they do not know," said the police spokesperson.
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