Crime 'went on vacation' during holidays, police say

Posted at 01/17/2014 12:17 AM | Updated as of 01/17/2014 12:17 AM

QUEZON CITY -- Quezon City Police District (QCPD) director Chief Supt. Richard Albano on Thursday night claimed the rise in crime incidents this month can be attributed to the intensified police operations during the holidays.

Albano said criminals were not able to operate during the Christmas season because the QCPD was in "full force".

His statement came following a rash of crimes perpetrated by criminals on motorcycles, the latest of which was a robbery and carjacking incident at an eatery in Kamuning Road.

The brazen robberies have led to the relief of two police commanders from their posts identified as SPO1 Roland Julian of Kamuning Road and SPO4 Olive Aguilar of Veterans' Village.

Albano issued a warning to other commanders to intensify their efforts against riding-in-tandem criminals or face removal as well.

"Let us not be lax in our duties. We should double our efforts, like we did last Holiday Season. Those who cannot handle the task will be relieved of their duties," Albano said.

Earlier, gunmen also robbed a computer shop in Veterans Village, robbed and killed an employee of a bar along Panay Avenue, and also robbed a justice department employee and companions along Scout Fernandez.

24/7 checkpoints

To address rising crime incidents, police will put up checkpoints across Metro Manila that will operate 24/7.

Police will also deploy more mobile units on the streets.

The checkpoints which will be random -- meaning, their locations will be changing -- will be manned by policemen in three shifts who will properly record violations.

Meanwhile, QCPD Station 10 chief Supt. Lemuel Obon said the suspects in recent crimes seem to be "trained" because of the way they perpetrated the crime.

The QCPD is also pushing for a law that would require motorcycle riders to wear reflective vests with their plate number on it.

Albano said that based on research, policies about reflective vests are already being practiced in other countries. It may not be 100 effective, but this will help prevent crime, he said.

"We are doing everything we can, but please know that Quezon City is a big place, and there are not enough policemen to monitor every area," he added.

Albano also urged citizens to help in crime prevention, by using police hotlines -- 117 and text 2920 -- in reporting anything suspicious or out of the ordinary.

Meantime, Malacanang assured the public that the PNP is doing its best to fight crimes. - with reports from Gus Abelgas, ABS-CBN News; dzMM