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Police go covert on thieves in Harbour View for Christmas

Published:Wednesday | December 5, 2018 | 12:00 AMJason Cross/Gleaner Writer
Sergeant Wickham Campbell, subofficer in charge of the Harbour View Police Station.

Robberies have deflected attention from murder and gang activity in the community of Harbour View in east Kingston, according to the police, who have been conducting numerous covert operations to clamp down on thieves in the area.

Subofficer in charge of the Harbour View Police Station Sergeant Wickham Campbell told The Gleaner in a recent sit-down interview that thieves have been preying on residents at nights, robbing them of cash and other valuables.

He said, however, that since approximately two weeks ago when a covert operation was put into action, there have been zero reports of robberies, and as a result, the police will continue this activity into the Christmas season and beyond.

"Leading up to Christmas, our concern is robberies. These robberies are committed by persons travelling in mostly Toyota Isis, Honda Stream, and Toyota Probox. Our analysis shows that between certain evening hours, the robberies usually occur. One thing we have been doing is to conduct covert patrols," Campbell told The Gleaner.

"A few weeks ago, we had five robberies in one night. Since then, because the criminals try to be a step ahead of the police, we decided on the covert patrols. We did some patrols two weeks ago, and since then, we have experienced nil robberies."

Campbell said that the operations are geared at fully eradicating robberies from the area.

"It could be that criminals are working with persons in the area who tell them that plain-clothes police are moving around. They seem to have got wind of that," he said.

"When robbers see the police in plain clothes, with cell phone in hand, criminals will assume that that is a simple robbery, but it is really the police waiting on you. We will, at all cost, try to get the persons committing these crimes."

President of the Harbour View Citizens' Association Orion Archat told The Gleaner: "I have been getting lots of complaints. The police here are doing the best that they can, but I think the Police High Command needs to pay a little more attention to the community of Harbour View."

Ludlow Bernard, who, for years, has been an integral part of the Harbour View Football Club, says that he has not received complaints of robberies from players at the club but confirmed that several persons in the community had made such complaints.