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Making Kuta’s Byways Safer

Community Group in Kuta to Form Neighborhood Watch Program to Reduce Mugging and Pick Pocketing

(5/24/2014) The Balinese residents of Banjar Pangabetan –the area surrounding Jalan Benesari and Jalan Poppies II in Kuta – are mapping out plans for a “neighborhood watch” program in order to thwart rising criminality in that area.

In recent months reports of thuggery, theft and purse snatching have become more prevalent on the two lanes feeding into the main traffic arteries of Kuta.

DenPost reports the vice chairman of the Local Community Association (LPM) in Kuta, Nyoman Hadi Wira Atmaja, confirmed that plans are being drawn up to enhance community security.

“Criminals are stalking their targets to the entrances of their hotels. There are muggings taking place almost every day,” said Hadi.

The community leader blamed the increase in muggings on the refusal of taxis in Legian to use their meters in the ate night hours, preferring instead to seek much higher negotiated fares.

As a result, many tourists opt to walk back to their hotels increasing their exposure to bag snatchers and muggers. Hadi said that if taxis would charge more reasonable fares, visitors would use this form of transportation, thereby reducing the criminal incidents.

DenPost says that both children and adults are perpetrating criminal acts in the area. Children involved in thefts circulate selling bracelets and other accessories in the process of pick pocketing or snatching valuables away from unsuspecting tourists.

Hadi told the press that he hoped the police would provide optimal security to visitors and help reduce rates of criminality. “But this problem (criminality) will also get our (the community’s) attention. In addition, we hope the police will also give their attention,” he added.