Should I help at a crime scene?
It is human nature to want to be helpful and assist others, but sometimes this trait could mean putting yourself in jeopardy. When it comes to crime, no one is safe, especially in South Africa, which, as of July 2019, has been dubbed the most dangerous place for solo travelers, particularly women.
So, when you see a crime taking place, should you jump in and assist, or turn the other way?
Well, this depends on each situation’s unique variables.
Always be sure to take your own safety into consideration first. It is never a good idea to get involved in an altercation with a criminal.
The best thing to do most times (if not every time) is call the proper authorities and have them come and intervene. Putting yourself in danger is never a good idea, not even to be a hero.
If the crime has already taken place, it is also never a good idea to go onto a scene and try to assist, as you could be tampering with vital evidence.
Arrive Alive says that when you have witnessed a crime, it is important to consider reporting it to the police. Although the consequences include that you may be required to testify, you will do your social responsibility and, in some way, prevent future similar crimes. This in itself is help.
What constitutes a crime scene?
A crime scene is any location that may be associated with a crime having been committed, Wikipedia explains. Crime scenes contain physical evidence that is pertinent to a criminal investigation.
When you tamper with a scene in any way, you hamper the investigation that will most likely be carried out by law enforcement.
A crime scene doesn’t necessarily have to be a location, but can also be the victim of a crime.