Gelvandale police praise community for co-operation, caution against overreaction

Gelvandale residents detained a man suspected of housebreaking. However, police released him shortly afterwards because there was no evidence to support the community’s suspicions
GOOD INTENTIONS: Gelvandale residents detained a man suspected of housebreaking. However, police released him shortly afterwards because there was no evidence to support the community’s suspicions
Image: GARETH WILSON

Gelvandale police have lauded the community for taking a proactive stance against crime in the area, but also cautioned residents to take care not to overreact or take the law into their own hands.

This was after residents caught a suspected housebreaker in Oribi Street on Monday morning and tied him to a fence until police arrived on the scene to take him into custody.

Police spokesperson Captain Sandra Janse van Rensburg said when police arrived the man, in his 20s, had his wrists tied to a fence and his ankles were bound together.

Van Rensburg said officers took the man, as well as the complainant, to the Gelvandale police station for questioning.

“It came to light that the alleged housebreaker was not caught breaking into a house.

“He was sleeping in an abandoned car when members of the community caught him.”

She said no case was opened and the suspect was not detained.

“We thank the community for their proactive approach to crime and their co-operation with the police.

“We are also grateful that they did not take the law into their own hands and waited for officers to apprehend the suspect.

“However, we also call on communities to take care and ensure they have a valid reason for detaining suspected criminals.

“If you are unsure whether or not a person has committed a crime, report the matter to the police and a thorough investigation can be done,” Janse van Rensburg said.

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