Fighting crime and strengthening the relationship between police and residents are the two main objectives of Edenvale SAPS’ new station commander, Col Steven Moodley.
Moodley was transferred to Edenvale and took on his role as new station commander on November 6.
And though Eyewitness News reported recently that Edenvale Police Station was ranked as ‘the worst performing station in Ekurhuleni’, the new commander plans to turn the station around and restore its reputation.
Moodley said he already developed a stabilisation plan to deal with crime in the Edenvale policing precinct.
“The stabilisation plan looks at all the main crimes in the area and how to address them. I also hope to meet with the security companies more often to share information related to crime and to identify solutions,” said Moodley.
With 16 years experience as a station commander Moodley believes he is the right person to lead Edenvale.
Moodley plans to have more joint operations with security companies, EMPD and the community itself.
Moodley also plans to host ‘crime summits’ where community roleplayers will be divided into groups. Crimes are identified and divided amongst the groups and each group then addresses how the crime can be prevented.
“While I was Kempton Park Station Commander I used this method and we were successful,” said Moodley.
Moodley also aims to establish sector crime forums and 13 residents will be elected by each sector to make up the forums.
“Twelve residents [three from each sector crime forum] will be elected by the community to form the ECPF executive,” said Moodley.
“After the executive has been elected, the 10 remaining individuals from each sector will report to the police, the ECPF and assist in the fight against crime.”
He said because of these elections, November’s broader forum meeting will not take place.
“Once the new executive has been elected the monthly meetings will resume. We might only start having meetings in January,” said Moodley.
Until a new executive has been elected the ECPF interim committee will oversee the day-to-day business of the ECPF.
Besides stabilising Edenvale and improving the police stations reputation as soon as possible, Moodley also has plans for 2018.
Moodley said he wants the police officers to focus more on vulnerable groups in the community such as the elderly. In recent months two elderly community members were targeted by criminals.
Kathleen Thomson (86) was held up and robbed by three men in Eastleigh on November 10
The NEWS reported that the suspects asked Thompson for directions to Karaglen and then attacked her. Thomson’s jewellery and handbag were stolen and she was assaulted. CCTV footage of the robbery left numerous community residents in shock.
On September 27 the body of 77-year old Terrence Sole was found in his Palliser home. Police believe he died two days earlier during a scuffle with robbers. Sole, who was strangled, was also the victim of two residential burglaries in the two months leading up to his death.
Two suspects were arrested by the Edenvale SAPS in connection with the murder. Moodley also hopes to have two empowerment programmes, Men for Change and the Women’s Network, in place next year. Moodley said Men for Change will address domestic abuse in the community while the Women’s Network will focus on issues facing women and children.
“I want police officers to move away from the glum stereotype and to be more sociable. Since my arrival at Edenvale, I have noticed a strained relationship between the Edenvale SAPS and the community.
“We need to harness all resources at our disposal and we should all work together for a better Edenvale,” said Moodley.