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122382Re: Pita Bonita Got Robbed and IT is NOT OK!

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  • BarryS
    Dec 1, 2010
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      --- In CostaRicaLiving@yahoogroups.com, "Carol" <carolmeeds@...> wrote:
      > IT is not ok for strangers, vendors, employees or acquaintances to
      > come into your space and take your stuff and hurt or threaten
      > you...not even a little bit ok.

      Sorry to hear about your friends, Carol.

      I agree, it's not OK.

      As you probably know, theft is built into the culture here. Even the law is tolerant of theft - Anything under $250 is a minor crime, and as far as we can tell, resources simply aren't allocated to the minor crimes. Paradise has rough edges.

      People who have been around for a while know about this, and tolerate it because it seems as though there is no other choice. Hence the "it could have been worse" responses.

      When we were robbed in our neighborhood, as were elevel other households, Nanci got 5 other people together who weren't afraid to join with her and go to OIJ and file denuncias. The OIJ guys hadn't seen that kind of community action before, and were in our yard in less than 24 hours. I got into the truck and took the police to the houses where the ladrones lived. The kids were eventually arrested, spent a little time in carcel, and are occasionally picked up again and brought back to jail to remind them of outcomes.

      The job is only partially done. The same ladrones may have been robbing again, but not in our neighborhood. Now it's the turn of people in that neighborhood to do the same thing we did here.

      As Roy Mirey, former Alcalde and one of our neighbors said, "you have to keep after them, keep after them, keep after them, keep the pressure on."

      It could be that those of us who simply say "it could have been worse" are contributing to the problem.

      Cahuita's using a much more organized approach, and they've gotten responses from the police all the way from San Jose. They've tried to include Puerto Viejo in some of those meetings. I haven't heard how they came out, and what the impact on crime has been.

      It starts all the way down in school. Without definite, positive skills learned in school, it's "easier to take a living rather than to make a living".

      We took our shot at taking action through the police. Now, we're working on the school issues, both on the administrative level in San Jose, and through having the government trade school - INA - teach trade school classes at our home.

      What are the chances of getting everybody in the area out doing something about these issues?

      Barry Stevens
      School help, food, microloans
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