There has been a recent increase in crime in area of San Jose Succotz Village and Benque Viejo Del Carmen Town, both in the Cayo District. As a result, some the villagers and townspeople have taken it upon themselves to patrol the area in order to keep it safe. Cayo Correspondent Fem Cruz spoke to one of the organizers in Benque.
In the last few weeks there have been an increase in vehicle thefts, some of them at gunpoint. There have been at least four reports of this sort in the west in recent days. Love News traveled to Benque Viejo del Carmen seeking answers and spoke to Wilson Pat, who organized last night’s neighborhood watch.
Wilson Pat, Neighborhood Watch Organizer: “Last night we had a village patrol because we are noticing in the community we have several incidents happening, there are the thefts of vehicles and so we are up in arms and we’re showing them please don’t come and molest us. We are mad of what they are doing here in the community, we are a peaceful community but whatever mischief you are doing you are coming in the wrong village to do it, please stay away because last night we were ready, we are ready for anything that will hurt our villagers we will deal with you. Last night everybody came out, we had vehicles, motorcycles, machetes, everything we were up in arms and we are ready, we are mad about what is happening in the community, we are not happy but we are doing it for the safety and the protection of our community. So far information we are gathering is that there are people coming to Succotz and taking pictures of houses and vehicles and then they prepare their own mischief to come and do it, they are not residents of the community they are outsiders. We will find them and we want to know where they are coming from but like I said it’s a matter of time and we are ready and I can guarantee you we will capture one of the assailants and we will try to deal with them.”
One of the incidents that occurred out west was a carjacking in San Jose Succotz. The victim, Alvin Chi, also spoke to our correspondent.
Voice of Victim: “It was around 8:15 when my wife was washing clothes. I heard the dogs barking so I came outside to take a look. As I stepped out the room I saw one man with a gun pointing it to my wife so as that happened I saw a next person jump in through the window, this person came inside the house with a gun. He opened the door and a third person came, afterwards my children came out crying. So when that happened I saw my wife getting nervous and she started to cry and I saw the person outside with the gun was about to shoot so my reaction was to get the car keys and just give it to them. In the process the person that was outside, by that time the two of them had the gun at my head, one on the side and one of the front. I told them to just take the vehicle and to not hurt my family. I remember that I told them that it belonged to my brother and they told me that they knew so they pushed my wife to the ground and did the same to me. It was only my vehicle that they took and they said that if I spoke to the police or if it appeared on Facebook they would come back and kill my whole family.”
We also spoke with the chairman of San Jose Succotz, Alfredo Manzanero, who told us more about the situation in the village.
Alfredo Manzanero,Village Chairman, San Jose Succotz Village Council: “The villagers are organizing themselves and they have come together as a village to try to stop the issue that is being done here in San Jose Succotz. We are trying to work with the village council and also our area rep and Minister of Security is trying to do security here in the village. In the village usually we just have one police but it is not a police that is permanent in the village so probably this afternoon we are going to try to make an arrangement so that we will have a police in the area or in our police station. It is very sad because the villagers are upset right now and they want to take revenge but I think the police have to deal with this so that’s why right now we will have a meeting and let them deal with the issue and not the villagers because we are exposing not only ourselves but also our children. We will have a meeting right now with the councilors and we are trying to set a time right now.”
There is a meeting scheduled for 6pm between the villagers and the Commissioner of Police. We will cover that meeting and bring you that story tomorrow.