~ MAC educators feel violated, enraged ~
PHILIPSBURG–Three hard-working from the Methodist Agogic Center’s (MAC’s) campus in Betty’s Estate feel violated, shocked and enraged after waking up in mornings to find that their vehicles had been stolen from in front of their residences while they were asleep refuelling to continue moulding the country’s children.
“It’s very invasive and inconvenient,” said one of the three educators, a mother with three children.
“I feel violated,” said another victim, a senior educator.
The three educators, all of whom work at the same school, had their vehicles stolen approximately one week apart over an approximately-three-week period.
Although two of the vehicles were equipped with alarms and one with an alarm, GPS and wheel-locks on all tires, the car thieves still managed to disable the alarms and GPS and make off with the vehicles without a sound, leaving the educators wondering what else they could have done to protect their hard-earned investments.
One of the teachers, who was tired after standing all day on her feet in the classroom, inadvertently left her bag in her car, losing all her identification, driver’s licence, passport and children’s passports, tablets, some teaching material and some other important documentation.
Luckily, one of the teachers found her car back on Sunday with the ignition system damaged and inoperable, after it was spotted when the tarpaulin used to conceal the vehicle blew off, exposing it.
Silver-grey Hyundai Tucson
The first educator’s vehicle was stolen around 3:30am January 24 in front of her home in the quiet Ebenezer neighbourhood. Two men in hoodies went off with the vehicle. The female educator, who has just about a year and a half left to pay off for her vehicle, had invested in keeping her vehicle in good working order, and is very upset at the loss.
“I felt very violated,” the educator told “The Daily Herald”, adding that she had reported the theft as well as engaged the services of someone to help look for her vehicle to no avail.
She is not aware as to whether the police have been searching for her vehicle.
“These persons are no longer breaking to enter the vehicles. … Some device is being used now, that they can just stand in front of your vehicle, open it and drive off with it.”
Although she no longer has her vehicle, she still has to pay the bank for the stolen car. The educator is frustrated. “I don’t know how equipped our police are. They were very vigilant during COVID to make sure we stayed off the streets. I wonder if they can be that vigilant once more to ensure that persons sleep safely at night and not be vandalised by persons who have no care in the world,” she said.
“It is strange that all three cars are from three teachers at the same school. Are we being targeted as educators? We don’t know. It is so coincidental for something like that to take place.”
She said it had become more heartless when exactly one week later one of her colleagues’ vehicle was also stolen from in front of her home and then another colleague’s vehicle was stolen on Saturday night into Sunday morning. “We don’t know. Only heaven can say why our vehicles. I don’t know at this time if MAC teachers are being targeted,” she said.
2018 Hyundai Creta
The second vehicle was stolen just before 4:00am in Retreat Estate. The teacher said her husband had woken up at approximately 5:30 in the morning and saw that the vehicle was not where she parked it.
“I was upset, but I checked my GPS tracker. The tracker app stated that at 3:49am the ignition was turned on. The last location the tracker picked up at 4:00am on Arlet Peters Road (formerly known as Cake House Road). I believe that’s where they took off the GPS tracker because that’s the last location that was detected,” said the frustrated teacher.
“I was driven to that location, but the vehicle wasn’t there. My husband had checked where the vehicle was parked and there was no broken glass to indicate that a window was broken and my very sensitive alarm did not go off during the night. I have both of my original keys and alarms to my vehicle. I assume that the thieves have some sort of technology to bypass the alarm and to start the vehicle without the keys. It also did not take them long to remove my GPS tracker.”
The teacher is stunned that even though she had done everything she was told she could have done to protect her vehicle, it was still stolen.
“It’s very invasive and inconvenient, because all my important documents were in the vehicle. It’s time-consuming and difficult to do day-to-day activities. Everything official requires ID. Because I have small kids and I’m a teacher, having a vehicle was a necessity for me. It’s upsetting,” she said.
Blue 2018 Hyundai i10
The third educator’s vehicle was stolen from in front of her home in Weymouth Hill, South Reward, between Saturday night and Sunday morning. “It was stolen from my yard. Right now, I am angry. I work for everything that I have and for some lowlife to come and just steal it irks me,” the educator told this newspaper on Sunday morning.
“I'm also attending USM [University of St Martin] and my bag with my laptop and books were in the car too. Now I have no way of getting my work done. I also no longer have any identification – every single piece of ID was in the car and now that too is gone,” she said, adding that she felt as if it was a targeted attack because, of all the vehicles parked on her street, hers was stolen.
“Once it’s a chance, twice it’s a coincidence, but three times it is a pattern and we need it to stop,” she said.
Luckily, this educator found her vehicle back during the course of Sunday in Valley Estate after she received feedback from a chat that her vehicle had been spotted. Fortunately, her documents and possessions were still in the vehicle. Information received indicated that the car thieves may have been scared off after a neighbour woke up when their dogs started barking. The vehicle was concealed with a tarpaulin, which was blown off by the wind, exposing the vehicle.
In the meantime, the other two educators want their vehicles back. They work hard moulding the youngsters of this nation, and these insensitive thefts not only disrupt their personal lives, but also interrupt their tasks of moulding young minds. The teacher with children would also like all her documentation back.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/3-vehicles-stolen-3-thefts-in-3-weeks