Juvenile thieves terrorise Henties Bay

03 Sep 2015 11:50am
SWAKOPMUND, 03 SEP (NAMPA) - The Swakopmund Magistrates’ Court is running out of options to control and rehabilitate two juveniles from Henties Bay who have been in and out of police custody numerous times.
The boys aged 10 and 11 have appeared more than four times in the same court on charges of house breaking and theft since the beginning of this year.
They have since been released in the care of their parents, sentenced to community services and are being counselled by social workers, but this did not stop them from allegedly committing the same offences.
Their latest appearance, which was conducted on camera, was on Wednesday when the court decided to keep them in the children’s holding cells in Swakopmund until their latest theft case is finalised.
The minors allegedly have a record of breaking into houses and tuck shops at Henties Bay to steal food, alcohol, cigarettes and other small items they can sell.
Sources close to prosecution told Nampa the court has tried everything to deal with the mischievous boys but nothing is working.
“Those boys do not listen. They do what they want. When you sentence them to community service they do not do it, instead, they evade and go steal again,” said a source.
The same source also suspected that the minors smoke and drink alcohol, as they allegedly use the F-word towards police officers and threaten to injure them.
“As young as they are, they have no fear or respect for the police. I really do not know how the court will solve this problem,” the source told Nampa.
Another source stressed that the situation is tough because the boys cannot be sent to prison because they are under 18 years of age.
“We do not have a juvenile prison in Namibia, so the court either sentences them to community services or release them in the care of parents, who have proved to be useless. The boys do not stay out of trouble for more than two days, just when they are released, you will see them again back in custody,” a source told Nampa.
A police officer at the court said: “The community of Henties Bay is tired of these boys. They have called the police on several occasions to go get them from there and keep them in custody, but that is impossible as they are young.”
Another source indicated that the Swakopmund Court is currently dealing with 10 cases involving minor boys.
Some are from Swakopmund and others from Henties Bay.
Magistrate Surita Savage on Wednesday postponed the two boys’ case to 10 September 2015 for continuation of trial.
It is however not predictable what punishment will be given should the boys be found guilty of another case of theft.