COMMUTERS have once again been urged to avoid boarding private vehicles amid an increase in robbery cases being recorded at various police stations.
The call was made by Harare provincial police spokesperson Inspector Luckmore Chakanza who said Blessing Derera, 48, of Ruwa lost her Huawei Y9 cellphone valued at US$100 and US$200 cash after boarding a private motor vehicle at VID Belvedere intending to get into town.
The motor vehicle had five occupants, including the driver.
Two at the front seat and two at the back passengers seat where Blessing sat.
“When the complainant was about to pay, one of the passengers, who was at the back seat, produced a knife and demanded the complainant to hand over all her belongings.
“The other passenger searched the complainant and took her cellphone and cash.
“The complainant was pushed out of the vehicle and the accused persons drove towards town,” said Insp Chakanza.
In another recorded case, Tyra Lewis, 17, of Mabelreign lost US$34, Tecno cellphone and small Itel cellphone in the morning after boarding a private vehicle at the intersection of Lomagundi Road and Second Street Extension intending to go to town.
The vehicle had four occupants, two females and two males, including the driver.
“Complainant occupied the front seat between two male accused persons.
“Along the way, the male accused person, who was in the front passenger seat, grabbed the complainant by the neck and produced a knife threatening to stab her if she resisted their demands.
“The female accused person searched Tyra’s handbag and stole cash and her cellphones.
“The accused persons later dumped the complainant near ZIMSEC Offices in Mount Pleasant and drove away.”