Potrerillos Neighborhood Watch Criminal Actively Report: November 7, 2012

I received the following from the Potrerillos Neighborhood Watch Facilitator.

Crime Report:

Potrerillos has suffered another costly burglary of a commercial business plus a murder was committed in a private home on a nearby ranch 

New Burglary Case,

The Potrerillos Gas Station was burglarized (for the 4th time) over night last Monday                      5-Novenber-2012.  The incident occurred when unknown individuals cut away the exterior locks of the office building and entered undetected.   Once inside they went to work on the cash vault containing $12,000,   this according to Police Investigators from Dolega PD.  Information provided indicates that the suspects spent some time bashing away at the cash vault until it was breached at which time the thieves made off with the money.

The investigation reviled that the perpetrators used a low lying drainage ditch located on the back side of the station to make their getaway,  a 4-door sedan described as a taxi without license plates was also reported to be circulating in the area at the time of the burglary but has not been definitively linked to this crime.  The Dolega Police are asking the public to be on the lookout for any suspicious taxies operating in the area without a license plate.  Anyone spotting a taxi matching this description is urged to immediately contact Dolega PD @ 776-0160.

Next Case,

On the date of Sunday 28-October-2012 the body of a homicide victim described as a Panamanian man approximately 36 years old was discovered in his home situated on a private farm near the village of Palma Real located west of Potrerillos Abajo.  The incident occurred when a lone suspect described as a Panamanian man approximately 32 years old savagely attacked the victim with a machete killing him.   Law Enforcement Authorities indicated that both the suspect and victim are brothers who were mutually competing for courtship of an unidentified woman when the suspect became enraged and murder his brother.

Information provided indicated that the 32 y/o perpetrator was quickly apprehended and that both individuals were reported to have been heavily intoxicated at the time of the incident.

Some more bad news,

The Special Ops motorcycle unit assigned to patrol Potrerillos along with the night shift officer assigned to the Potrerillos Substation has been suspended and both reassigned out of the area.  This has caused a dramatic reduction in Police presence and unfortunately only severs to embolden the thieves to operate with impunity.   A good example of this is if the night shift officer was still on duty at the Sub Station the likelihood of the gas station located directly across the street being ripped off probably would not have occurred.

Recognizing that our community has been largely abandoned by the upper echelons of the Police leadership it is highly recommended that you take all necessary steps to shore up your personal security.   You should start by conducting a vulnerability assessment,  this can be done by mentally placing yourself in the position of a potential burglar who is planning on targeting your home.   Do it both in the day and at night so you can see what they would see.

Some things to consider,

If you don’t have an outside dog get one,  clear away any underbrush and concealment around your home and install exterior light fixtures mounted up high(12 to 14 feet up) in glass panel enclosed housings to reduce the opportunity for burglars to tamper with them or easily bust out the light bulbs with rocks.  Securely cover your main breaker switch typically located outside near the power meter.

Communicate with your neighbors and develop contingency plans in case of hostile acts perpetrated against you or your property by criminals,  keep your cell phone and car keys together in a secure yet accessible location in case you need them in a hurry.  Park your vehicle so it can be driven strait out in an emergency without having to back out or any unnecessary maneuvering, this is especially true at night.   

Always keep your doors closed and locked at all times when at home (and in your car), install window bars if possible and consider installing high security & highly decorative exterior doors. Professional quality high security doors of any size and designs can be custom made to order from Jose Luis owner of Dekora ferro S.A. located in David.   I have several of them and highly recommend their products.

If you have a driveway gate in front of you home close and lock it, consider installing an inexpensive surveillance system from Price Smart, most thieve are deterred by cameras.  Keep a copy of the “Emergency Contact” phone numbers (attached) in a location for quick reference,  it’s also recommended to keep a copy in all your vehicles for road side assistance.  

If you take away nothing from this report at least remember one thing,  for the time being you are on your own,  protect yourself!    

Potrerillos Neighborhood Watch Facilitator 

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