Daring thieves are terrorizing Hillside, Cranborne and Braeside residents. The criminals are robbing several homes every night, mugging people on their way home from work, and smashing car windows to grab valuables at traffic lights.
Even mourners at funerals have fallen prey to robbers in the area, with police warning people to keep an eye on their valuables while mourning.
Robberies in these areas have sharply increased with residents saying they believe the thieves are from Epworth. “I lost my property to thieves last year. When they were arrested by Braeside Police Station, it was established that the culprits came from Epworth. Unfortunately I only recovered a television set. My other valuables could not be found,” said Hillside resident Clever Manyuka.
Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) spokesperson, Chief Superintendent Paul Nyathi, said there has been an increase in the number of burglaries in Harare and the hardest hit areas are along the Chiremba Road. “The criminals are victimising residents at night when they are fast asleep, stealing clothes, cell phones, televisions, decoders, groceries and other items. Some daring criminals in Harare are now targeting mourners at funeral proceedings, breaking into vehicles and stealing valuables such as laptops, cell phones and cash,” he said. Two recent funeral robberies occurred in Cranborne and Braeside.
Chief Superintendent Nyathi said that in response, ZRP have stepped up surveillance on all funeral gatherings in those areas.
Tariro Mukandi lost her valuables at a funeral in Braeside when her car was ransacked by robbers. “It was a double tragedy for me in that I lost a close relative, and then thieves robbed me of my phone and the cash that I had left in the car. I want to warn people to keep their belongings close to them because not all people at funerals are mourning the dead,” she said.
Relatives have also complained that thieves are also targeting victims of car accidents. “When my father was involved in a fatal car accident on his way from Harare International Airport, his empty wallet and ID was found a few meters away. The cash had been taken when we arrived at the accident scene,” said Alfios Nhamburo who lives in Hillside.
With this spike in crime in these areas, Hillside, Braeside and Cranborne residents are urged to be vigilant.