THE police should maintain control over key areas in Lae such as Top Town.
In an incident last Friday, an old man using the Bank South Pacific’s automatic telling machine (ATM) had K400 stolen from him by a youth.
The youth walked out and got lost in the crowd.
Two tourists walking up the road from Downtown into Top Town that afternoon almost had their phone snatched by youths near the shortcut route.
The youths were consuming alcohol using goodwill collections from people using the shortcut route.
In another incident on Saturday afternoon, a group of primary school children were involved in a fight that turned into a stone hurling competition starting from Top Town bus stop and leading into 8th street and onto the court house area. This continued for about 20 minutes before police arrived.
On Tuesday, a youth snatched a phone from a woman who was carrying a baby.
The youth ran straight into the public toilet area.
The public reacted and other youths locked the gates to the toilet area to protect their friend.
The commotion went on for more than 30 minutes.
The police did not show up.
A number of people tried calling the police hotline number, but it was not working.
The public took the law into their own hands and beat the youth up before marching him to the police station.
These cases point a breakdown in police response time and public fear as they realise that if this is happening in the centre of town, then the outer areas of the city are probably in chaos.
Can Lae Met Supt get another reliable number that people can call.
The police should discourage loitering around public areas such as bus stops, streets and in front of shops.
The number of youths hanging aimlessly around Top Town and Eriku are increasing every day.
The people need police to ensure there is order.
Concerned Lae Resident,