Combined efforts against theft in the City of Kigali over the last eight months have led to the recovery of dozens of stolen items, mainly electronics, according to the police.
The recovered items include laptops and desktop computers, television sets, smart-phones and tablets, home theatres and speakers, as well as projectors, printers and eight motorcycles.
Among the victims of burglary are two internet cafes at Gisementi in Remera, where at least 46 computers were stolen, which were all recovered while the thieves were arrested.
“Although cases of theft were generally not alarming, the overall goal is to have no crime or limit it as much as possible,” said Theos Badege, the RNP spokesman.
“When cases of theft increased, the police approached it in a different and improved way, by establishing a crackdown unit, mapping out targeted areas, dismantling black markets that were buying stolen items, but also further building strong partnerships with the people which facilitated information sharing on suspected thieves and illegal stores,” he explained.
This approach, according to police records, has reduced theft to an average of two case per day, compared to at least five cases previously.
Badege said that the success in deterrence, recovery and arrests, are largely due to timely reporting by victims, which facilitates rapid response, as well as strengthened police operations and community night patrols, and increased sensitization, among others.
“In some cases, victims report the crime after a day or two, or even after a week, while others don’t report it at all. In other situations, some alleged victims have no proof of ownership, be it a receipt or even a mark to prove ownership. That’s why we still have some of the recovered items in store,” he added.
He advised people to buy from recognized shops, keep receipts and always report loss or theft immediately.