Readers respond with many ideas to reduce crime

Readers responded vigorously to present suggestions on changes in the Costa Rican system that would reduce crime and enhance punishment. They were responding to an article Monday.

Some ideas were pretty draconian, like instituting chain gangs or poisoning cocaine as it passed through the country. Others were more in keeping with the Costa Rican traditions:

“True or not, the idea of the ‘neighborhood watch’ might be the best answer for CR.  This can happen without blathering politicians who are, in fact, clueless about crime and how to fight it.”

Some reported their own personal crime wave:

“My wife and I lived on the beach in Puntarenas and we were robbed over 15 times on our property and inside our home, We were hit at 1 p.m. Jan. 8th when the earth quake hit, and it took the O.I.J until 11 p.m. that night to drive five miles to our house. My neighbor, five house up the street was robbed while sleeping and also hit 22 times in one month.”

A number of readers questioned the competence ofthe police and the reliability of the courts:

“After talking with several of my local police, some have the mentality that it is futile and disheartening to arrest someone, only to have them released before they finish their paperwork. ‘Why risk your life for little pay and no sense of accomplishment?’ Punishment needs to be enforced, as well as the existing laws.”

Other readers urged victims to make a report:

“I think the solution has to be with the people. How many of us have had something stolen from us or we were attacked and we never reported the crime. Most Costa Ricans do not report any robbery of a cell phone or break-in unless the value of object is more than $200 or $300. They say that the police will not investigate anything less. So we all have to report all crime that occurs.”

The responses ranged from the constructive to the cynical. A number of readers spoke with authority, suggesting that they have law enforcement of judicial experience. Some letters were anonymous, but most included the name of the sender. A.M. Costa Rica will begin publishing the anti-crime ideas today HERE!

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