Man On ‘Crime Spree’ At Large

“I was holding the phone and my daughter was watching videos. The man just walked past us and grabbed the phone,” Ms Toro said.
15 Jan 2021 12:34
Man On ‘Crime Spree’ At Large
Damodar City, Suva is one of the places where the man was alleged to have committed one of his crimes. Photo: Leon Lord

A man is alleged to have gone on a crime rampage which started in Sports City, moved to Damodar City and concluded near the Nabua Police Station on Wednesday.

It started with the man attempting to break into an electronic shop located on the top floor of Sports City.

Shavneel Prakash, an employee of the shop had closed the doors and was inside preparing to go home when he heard noises.

“It was as if someone was forcing the door. I switched off all the lights inside the shop,” he said.

“I saw a man wearing a black t-shirt and a cap, leaning on the door. He was moving forward and slamming the door with his body as he attempted to open it.”

Mr Prakash went to the door and knocked on the glass from inside. He said this made the man move from there.

Mr Prakash said the man then went to the Nayan’s Supermarket and made a commotion. A cashier at the Supermarket took a picture of him.

He is then alleged to have moved to Damodar City where he allegedly snatched a phone from a pregnant woman and her child.

Pauline Toro, 29, was sitting in the front seat of their car parked in Damodar City. The windows were rolled down. She is four-months-pregnant. Her two-year-old daughter was sitting on her lap. Her husband Jamie was in the supermarket.

Paulini Toro was a victim of the man’s alleged crime. Photo: Leon Lord

Paulini Toro was a victim of the man’s alleged crime. Photo: Leon Lord

“I was holding the phone and my daughter was watching videos. The man just walked past us and grabbed the phone,” Ms Toro said.

“By the time I came out, he was gone.”

Ms Toro said the incident happened around 7.45pm.

She said she had a “Find My Phone” app and had also texted on the phone that if the person did not return their phone, the Police would be called.

The man, following the successful robbery, then flagged a taxi at Grantham Road.

Taxi driver Ravneil Deo said it was a terrifying experience.

He said the man got into the back seat and said he wanted to go to the University of the South Pacific.

“Just before USP he said he changed his mind and wanted to go to Nadera. We drove along Fletcher Road when just before the Karsanji roundabout he asked to stop and come to the front seat,” Mr Deo said.

“When he came to the front, I realised he was a local man and not a Vanuatu national as he had said he was. He asked me to stop near Shop N Save, where he attempted to buy drugs. But he did not want to pay any money for it.”

Mr Deo said the man smelt of liquor as well. He said from there he decided to go to the Nabua Police Station.

The man had started becoming aggressive and angry when he realised Mr Deo was going towards the Nabua Police Station. Just before the Police station near the barbeque area, the man attempted to take the wheel of the taxi. Mr Deo said he was quick to switch off the engine and take the key out and step out of the vehicle.

“The man then tried to come to my seat and attempted to start the car. By this time, a Police vehicle came behind us. The man came out and started standing near the car,” Mr Deo said.

“I was surprised that the Police officers did not come out of the car. If they had done so at that time they would have caught the man.”

Mr Deo said he then went to the Police station and made a note of what had happened. By this time the man had made his escape.

The man’s picture is circulating on social media and has been identified.

Police spokesperson Savaira Tabua said Police were looking into the matter.

Edited by Jonathan Bryce


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