BAGUIO CITY – The public is being warned by police operatives and operators and drivers of public utility jeepneys on the new modos of pickpocketers who shifted to jeepneys plying the various barangays instead of those in the central business district area and victimizing senior citizens and students.
Considering that the police concentrated their forces in populated areas in Baguio and Bebnguet, sources disclosed pickpocketers also shifted their targets to elderly and student passengers going to and coming from the different barangays and riding on jeepneys in order to reach their desired destinations.
The pickpocketers, who usually come in pairs, are now scattered in the barangays to spot their prospective victim and once they are able to do so, they allow the senior citizen or student to first board the jeepney and then follow him or her and occupy the vacant spaces on both sides.
When the jeepney is already full, one of them pays their fare and deliberately allows a coin to fall on the floor in order to disrupt the attention of their victim and passengers while his companion starts getting the valuables of their victim either inside his or her bag, pocket or in any suitable place within reach.
After successfully pursuing their evil motive, the two pickpocketers eventually alight along the route and leave their victim helpless.
According to some drivers who were able to witness the illegal activities of pickpocketers, they prefer to victimize senior citizens and students because they get easily destructed once a coin falls on the floor, leaving their pockets and bags open for them to get their cash and valuables.
Some drivers claimed they know the faces of the pickpockets boarding their jeepneys but they are afraid to call the attention of their passengers because they might get back at them through the use of either deadly weapons that would affect their being able to earn income daily.
Further, they true to put an advisory in their respective vehicles but it is unfortunate that senior citizens cannot read their advisories because of poor eyesight.
The source called on police authorities to deploy intelligence agents in the different jeepney staging stations so that they will be able to pinpoint those responsible for the rampant pickpocketing inside jeepneys, especially during rush hours.
By Dexter A. See