web counter The Madness of MokcikNab: Hit First, Ask Questions Later
The Madness of MokcikNab
Motives, movements and melodrama in the life of a thirty something mum.

Monday, March 20, 2006
Hit First, Ask Questions Later

Some things make you wonder why you pay income tax.

This is what happened to our friend, Ms Way-Too-Groovy-for-Her-Husband (or Ms WagBun for brevity, but let's not argue about the technicalities of abbreviation).

This morning Ms WagBun dropped off her daughter at school, one of those old ones in the middle of the city. As she was about to return to her car, she was attacked by a snatch thief, who wanted her handphone. A struggle ensued, the phone dropped to the ground, and the assailant took flight. Fortunately for Ms WagBun, other parents chased after the man, and he was finally apprehended by the school guard. Now this is where the fun starts.

If this happened to you, you'd call the police, right? Who else would you call? Surely, the good men and women who vowed to serve and protect the public from all evil. After all, you've seen them do exactly that on Gerak Khas and Maria-Mariana or whatever else that has Erra Fazira and AC Mizal in it. We're not asking for Detective Mac Taylor.

So, of course Ms WagBun called the police.

And the police told her they can't do anything.

Because they said the guy didn't actually get away with the goods. So like, no crime was committed. I'm quite willing to dispute that, but I left my Penal Code at home.

Why, people get to stay in that nifty resort in Kamunting just for thinking about another form of government. But in this incident, where the basic ingredients of culpability -- mens rea (guilty mind or intent, not male butt) and actus reus (actual wrongdoing) -- are evident in broad daylight, in front of maybe half a dozen witnesses, the police say they can't do anything? Can't do? Not willing to do? Who knows what's the difference anymore?

The police assured Ms WagBun that they will step up their rondaan's around schools, and not just LRT stations (because so far, that's where most snatch thefts occur, they said). Obviously, increased police presence will prevent known criminals from committing a felon, much better than say, locking up them scoundrels in the first place. (Insert argument about crowded jails, low pay for the Force, the politics of incarceration, rehabilitative vs punitive, Krusty Krab vs Chumbucket or whatever, here)

So anyway, here was Ms WagBun, shaken and stirred at her daughter's school so early in the morning, with one guilty snatch thief (okay, aspiring snatch thief) on her hands. What was she supposed to do with this guy, now that he's caught redhanded? She insisted on making a police report, and the police officer on the other end (if you're with me, they're talking on the phone, remember) said she can come round to the police station, with the security guard and the snatch thief. Haha. She's going to drive to a police station, in her car, with two strange men, one of whom just tried to rob her.

Well, okay, let's just play along. Her car is somewhere at the back of the school, and the security guard offered to drive it up front, so that they can all go to the police station for a nice chat and a spot of tea, perhaps. In the meantime, the thief is supposed to be in the custody of the other guards. But since all good things must come to an end, the guy managed to escape, and the other guards couldn't contain the interloper. Ms WagBun called back the police, hoping one of their Gerak Khas kereta ronda would be able to nab the man, but the good officer said :

"Kalau dah lari, tak leh nak buat apa lah"

You know, in Jakarta, if a snatch thief is caught, he will be at the mercy of the crowd, who would invariably beat him to a pulp, and the scene is then replayed on the evening news in all its graphic glory. But we think we're more civilized than that, don't we?


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