Wednesday, June 6, 2007

It's not Snatch-theft, it's Robbery

 

I get dismayed by all those reports of people having their bags, wallets or jewelry snatched by wayside thieves.

And then there are those who get confronted by menacing looking hoodlums with parangs, knives or sticks and who forcefully take away their wallets, handphones, handbags etc. Some of them even come in gangs on motorbikes.

Get it right. This second activity should be termed robbery. If there are visible weapons like knives, sticks, crash helmets, it's called armed robbery. Not snatch theft. As soon as one is threatened with bodily harm, it's not petty anymore.

We've had a number of cases in our neighborhood some years ago. The modus operandi was to push the victim (mostly ladies) and as soon as they fell, grab their goods and run. One old lady I know was pushed from her bicycle and her necklace was robbed from her neck. I say "robbed" because that's what it was. Daylight robbery. Sudden, violent, and without mercy, they have no qualms about hurting, maiming or even killing their victims.

I think it's time to get this terminolgy right, not for the sake of being politically correct, but for the proper definition for the law to mete out punishment to fit the crime. Whether the law-keepers are really doing their jobs properly or not, is a different matter.

For our neighborhood, perhaps the law to their credit, caught up with the guy or guys. There's been some peace and quiet for a while now. But that doesn't mean we don’t keep our eyes open our doors locked or go out decked out in our jewelry.

 

16 comments:

  1. I think those are the right terms Teh. The crime is also common here in some parts of the cities in my country. But in the province (Davao) where I grew up, these robbers/thieves are executed without due process. The result, the crime rates are almost nil.

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  2. Yeah, hang em, hang em high (do I sound like a cowboy?)

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  3. Yes, should make it practical in Malaysia too

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  4. Yes, should make it practical in Malaysia too

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  5. yeah...let's recall Wyatt Earp, Wild Bill Hickok and bring 'em o'er here, n finish the job. How about "Dirty" Harry Callahan?
    I remember Indonesia once did that to the hardcore types although it was officially hushed up. But they cleaned up the country for a while.

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  6. I remember Indonesia once did that to the hardcore types although it was officially hushed up. But they cleaned up the country for a while.

    I remembered that ...almost reminiscence of some old Indonesian vigilante movie.

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  7. yeah...the wild-wild west conditions we have call for wild-wild west solutions.

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  8. Sounds like burma too. The crime rate is almost zero there. So is the the right to freeedom.. zero.

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  9. So it's said, a country can't survive for long from either end of the scale...
    Freedom has to be defined as freedom from fear, hunger, poverty; the freedom of worship, thinking & learning, information, expression...etc. There is no perfect country nor perfect govt. What we hope for is one that rules with benevolence and principles, where justice and progress is balanced, and corruption and crime is kept at minimum.
    We are not free from crime, and some of us have no freedom of choice of religion and many are still poor. Plenty of room for improvement, you might say.

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  10. not realise this, uncle mean people born into the family with no freedom of religion but need to believe the family's religion?

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  11. Google "Lina Joy" and read the case.

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