Crime blamed on open land

CRIMINAL LOOKOUT POINT: From this structure, anyone can spy on Shear's property and plan a break-in.

MARION SHEAR, a resident from Brackendowns Extension 5, has suffered numerous break-ins on her property, along with an increase in other crimes in her area. According to her, this is a problem which has gone unattended for years.

Behind her house is an open strip of land which belongs to Rand Water. Heaps of abandoned rubble litter this property. Weeds have grown everywhere and among them lie plastic bottles and garbage. The fence that surrounds the land is of no use and huge pieces are missing.

“This makes it very easy for criminals to break into the adjacent houses. My house is one of them and I have been struggling to keep criminals out of my property with a lot of effort and not so much success,” she said.

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“They broke into my house so many times. I don’t know how many things I’ve had to replace over the years – things they stole and things they broke. They cut our electric fence with a machete. They broke one of our doors out of its hinges.”

What’s more, she added, is that there is a concrete structure in the field right across her house where criminals can stand and watch everything that’s happening within the property. She feels that she and her daughter are unsafe when they are alone by their pool.

In the street where she lives, she has noticed teenage boys loitering about, even during school hours. “They make money and don’t go to school,” she said. She alleged that, among the tall grass and weeds that grow in the open land, they use and exchange illegal drugs safely out of sight.

“Most of the crimes in this area are due to this piece of land. It’s just too easy to access and there are so many places to hide or do scaly things,” she said.

According to her this issue has been going on for many years and she said that she has contacted Rand Water countless times, only to be disregarded. She feels helpless.

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The RECORD requested comment from Rand Water. They stated that they “will be monitoring the construction site to prevent trespassers from entering the site.” They also promised to “regularly cut the long grass and weeds to improve visibility in the area; as well as level the material used by the contractors to protect the privacy of residents.”

If you or someone you know are in a similar situation, feel free contact the RECORD 011 724 7000 or [email protected]


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Monique van Wyk

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