Car thieves target Portmore communities - Mayor implores residents to form strong citizenship associations
Like many times before, residents of Greater Portmore in St Catherine are scared to take their eyes off their vehicles, as thieves have been going through their communities in the dead of night, stealing cars.
A resident, who asked for anonymity, said his car is among the many vehicles that have been stolen since the beginning of the summer in Portmore.
He told THE WEEKEND STAR that he always parks on the side of the road since he became a car owner two years ago.
"I always check on it, but that night I was really tired," the resident said.
"What I am understanding is that a some youths from Spanish Town come cross and do dem ting late night, and a leave in the mornings. Sometimes dem thief all three cars in one night."
While not corroborating the resident's claims of where the culprits are coming from, the Greater Portmore police said that almost every other day there is a report of a stolen car in Portmore.
"This is nothing new. The way Portmore is set up, especially Greater Portmore, it is easy for people to steal cars," the policeman said.
The policeman said sometimes residents have to park two or three blocks away from their homes.
"If nobody watching dem, then anyone can come and steal them," he said.
Meanwhile, Mayor of Portmore Leon Thomas echoed the same point, saying that Portmore was created for people from a low socio-economic background.
"They never thought that people would really live in Greater Portmore and buy cars, so now that people live here and own cars, the cars have to park on the road," Thomas said.
Thomas is imploring citizens to get active in their citizens associations to assist the police in curtailing car theft.
"What the people need to come together and do is set up strong citizen associations so that they can form neighbourhood watches because the police alone can't do it," Thomas said.
"I really feel their pain. A car was stolen from me about five years ago in Greater Portmore. I know it's hard because when you save out of nothing and buy a car and get up in the morning and don't see it, it's hard."