Pat Symcox's home burgled

2011-11-25 08:07

Durban - Former Proteas and Dolphins cricketer Pat Symcox has described his shock at coming face to face with an armed robber in his beach home when he and his wife, Liz, were robbed at Mtwalume on Wednesday morning.

Symcox said he woke up when he heard his dog barking.

“At 02:00 the dog barked. I woke up and went to the bathroom and when I came out I was face to face with an intruder who had taken my rifle.”
Symcox sleeps with the rifle at his bedside.

“The intruder was in my room when I woke up. It’s scary to think of that.”

His wife was asleep in the same room and was awoken by Symcox’s scream.

“When I saw the intruder I locked myself in another room and screamed and he ran through the hall and got out through a small window. We are lucky that (Liz) did not wake up when he was in the bedroom,” he said.

Symcox believes there was more than one robber. They gained access to his property through a small hole in the electric fence and entered the house through a small window that didn’t have burglar bars.

The robbers got away with a laptop, a firearm and other personal items. The property has electric fencing and security gates.

“They could have been in my house for hours. They broke into my store room and got in there as well.

“We are just very lucky that they never harmed us, very lucky.”

Symcox said most of the houses in his neighbourhood are holiday homes and there have been a few burglaries.

“Crime in South Africa is really getting out of hand. The police really need to do get proper systems in place to reduce it.”

He said that the intelligence on the ground needs to be increased. “These guys are obviously stealing and selling the stuff for cash. Police need to find where they are selling. That cuts off the supply.”

The Witness

  • elspeth.hassall - 2011-11-25 08:25

    Hey Pat, welcome to the club!

      Lionel - 2011-11-25 08:28

      You beat me to it:):):)

      Dirk - 2011-11-25 11:49

      Not the first time, I think

  • Barry - 2011-11-25 08:28

    This is not news. We are dealing with this on daily basis.

      Sean - 2011-11-25 09:25

      Crime happens so often in S.A and the sad thing is that many South Africans accept a abnormality (crime) as normaility these days .

      clivelang1 - 2011-11-25 09:38

      Exactly. My house was burgled too. News 24 didn't run an article on me........favouritism I tell you!!!!

  • colin.dovey - 2011-11-25 08:41

    We had Plumbers work on our Geyser - the next weekend they came in through the roof by way of leaving some tiles loose........we came back from taking my wife to the hospital and luckily they ran away....could have been a lot worse....You have got to watch every move...they pretend they are coming to do pool cleaners, garden service, telephone, meter readers, WATCH out for every ruse in the in SA can be terrifying...but NEVER Boring :-)

  • cilla.webster1 - 2011-11-25 08:43

    Yup! Welcome to the club. The south coast is riddled with crime. Glad everyone is safe.

  • Robbie - 2011-11-25 09:19

    Pat,you should be arrested for not having your firearm in your safe.

      martin.gee.godfrey - 2011-11-25 11:21

      I am not sure I agree with your logic. The point of having any firearm is for protection. Whether or not a rifle is the right thing to have is open to debate but, surely in your own home, when you are there in person, your firearm can be close at hand? When I had my 9 Mil, I kept it in a draw next to my bed at night for easy access at my old home (which was frequently targeted) if it was broken into whilst I was sleeping. During the day it was locked safely away out of harms way. I seriously doubt that the authorities will prosecute Symcox for "losing his firearm". There is hardly any point in having a firearm for protection if it's locked in the safe.

      martin.gee.godfrey - 2011-11-25 12:09

      @Andrew. I agree that there are rules in place for firearm owners, but if you look at the article, he lives in an electric fenced property. There is no mention of how the hold in the fence was made. I'm sure that he felt he was relatively well protected by his security system and dog, hence, his having a fireaarm next to his bed was probably not negligent and proving negligence in this particular instance would be fairly difficult. For the record, I no longer have a firearm (even though I was trained in the use of it) as the onus placed on me under the new legislation would probably make me out a criminal if I used my firearm in self defence or, as in this instance had it stolen in what I probably believed was a secure property.

  • Sabiha - 2011-11-25 09:22

    Beach home or not whichever ever area, celebrity or not this country we citizens are never safe , by any chance pat will u be thinking ogfalso immigrating to Australia?

  • tristan.kilian - 2011-11-25 09:53

    Does anyone know why we have such high crime? It's because of the high unemployment and high number living below the breadline. People are doing it for survival. It's not crime syndicates operating to enrich themselves. It's the poor, hungry, homeless people robbing the rich to feed themselves and their families. So shouting and screaming at the police to do a better job is useless when we aren't doing anything to help those poor out of their situations. We are looking for a paradigm shift in South Africa, not just more policing.

  • Justin - 2011-11-25 09:59

    Very niave comments Pat. "Police need to find where they are selling. That cuts off the supply.” They are selling everywhere, through the black market to the blokes on the street, many of them through the police. 80% of south africans have probably bought stolen goods. We live in an era of Mad Max, a free for all banana republic, run by wannabe dictators in their psuedo democracy. Either don't have any valubles in your beach cottage, or leave them on the stoep, as part of your contribution to our welfare society.

  • Freddie - 2011-11-25 10:04

    This is not the first time Pat has been robbed in Mtwalume. The place is a well known crime ridden cesspit.

  • Andrew - 2011-11-25 10:13

    what a looser to leave his wife ther and scream from another room

  • Andrew - 2011-11-25 10:15

    what a looser to leave his wife there and scream from another room 1 0 Reply to Andrew | 0 comments (hide) | Delete

  • Gerhard Uys - 2011-11-25 10:49

    TIA baby TIA! This is africa my friend and if you want to live in a fancy house by the sea then make sure your electric fence is hole - free and your little window there by the toilet is propely closed. 1 -0 to mr criminal.

  • Ric - 2011-11-25 11:18

    Have a look at this clip of a comedy show for the type of investigation that is likely... (Apologies to the few old school police out there who are still capable and motivated to conduct proper investigations)... P.S. There is no point in sleeping with a firearm next to you if you have no system in place to give you some advanced warning of an intruder...

  • Zion - 2011-11-25 13:40

    Rather interesting article and reactions I dare say. Were Pat to re-enact every single comment given in the article we would have a hundred scenarios. The probability someone would have been shot is high when acting out a particular comment. But nobody was shot so the comments are all equal but biased. Therefore Pat made the right decision. Pat could have shouted "stop thief" "Stop thief" and got blasted for his troubles. Imagine if Pat had a cricket ball at hand.

  • krieger.shaun - 2011-11-26 10:21

    Small window which has no burglar bars was left open! PYAI

  • des.maartens - 2011-11-28 13:30

    All these crime experts Pat and bleeding hearts as well. One lesson if you live in South Africa is to make sure you sleep with one eye open.

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