A lot of crimes have been committed in 2017 and previously and some of these offenders are regretful of committing criminal acts. A 56-year-old male who was incarcerated for 15 years for murdering his brother while high on Mandrax has shown remorse to the community and to his family. He wants to use the lessons and skills that he's learnt in prison to the benefit of his community.
"During my 15 year sentence at the Johannesburg Correctional Service, I was taught a lot as I was also active and participated in different activities. I joined the boxing club where they taught us self-defence skills and how to keep fit and healthy and I instantly felt in love with the boxing club. My new year's resolution is to stay out of crime and work on building myself and the community that I live in," said the 56-year-old-man.
The ex-convict says that it is not easy for the community to welcome you back in the neighbourhood because not everyone will like the fact that you have finished your sentence and are back to stay with them.
"This year I want to change the perception that people have about ex-convicts namely that when we come from prison it means that we are bad people. I finished my prison sentence two months ago but I still find it difficult to interact with the community and some are even looking at me in a disapproving manner. They have not accepted me back in the community."
Const Matrose from Sterkspruit SAPS feels that everyone deserves a second chance and that prison is not there to give convicts a bad image, but is there to help and correct those who are doing wrong. It's like a rehabilitation centre.
"There are a lot of prisoners who were sentenced and came to prison known to be bad people and known with all the wrongdoings. After they completed their sentence they transform to newly-born individuals and go back to the community with a different and positive mindset," added Const Matrose.
Crime has a lot of consequences and it is not easy to regain the trust of your community after you have completed your prison sentence and have to go back to the community. Alcohol is also one of the major contributors to crime.
Const Mthunzi Tsetse