Quick thinking on the part of a Campus Protection Services (CPS) officer has led to the arrest of two male suspects involved in a robbery.
On Tuesday, June 15, patrolman Jonathan van der Ross was on duty in the vicinity of Avenue Road on lower campus when he heard first-year student Nwabisa Matshoba screaming.
Van der Ross responded when he saw two males running in the direction of Mowbray railway station. After speaking to Matshoba he ascertained that the suspects had stolen her handbag.
With the help of a patrol vehicle, he gave chase and arrested the suspects. A formal charge was opened against the suspects after Matshoba identified them as her assailants. Her bag was also recovered. In a letter expressing her gratitude to Van der Ross for coming to her rescue, Matshoba said he had shown what it meant to go the extra mile for someone in need.
"I am very proud to be a UCT student because I know it is a blessing to be protected by courageous and dedicated people like Mr Van der Ross. I was just amazed by the job proficiency everyone showed at the time."
She continued: "Mr Van der Ross showed great dedication to his work and to saving my possessions, that touched me deeply. If he had not responded to my cry for help, I would be feeling depressed over what had happened but thanks to him I have a victorious story to tell."
Matshoba would like to extend her thanks to the other officers who assisted in the arrest.
They are senior inspector Aubin Lovelot, section leader Mpumelelo Pambukile and patrolman Joseph Jacobs. In another success story, an alert Supercare employee at Hiddingh Campus notified CPS after recognising a suspect who had been previously described in Monday Paper.
The suspect, a woman with very short reddish-brown hair, her front teeth capped in gold and the word 'love' tattooed between the knuckles of her hand, has been seen on numerous occasions at various locations standing in passageways talking on a cell phone. Once unsuspecting employees leave their offices, she enters and steals small items such as cell phones, wallets and handbags.
She has been arrested and detained and has been found to have a long criminal record.
With the start of the new semester bringing relaxed students back to campus, CPS will be initiating an intensive crime awareness campaign to increase vigilance.
CPS deputy operations manager, Alain Snyman said: "During the month of July there will be increased activities to rid the campus of crime. These will include identity checks and roadblocks. We will also use the opportunity to make the university community more aware after the vacation period."
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