With an average of 11 burglaries a day and a recent spate of low-intensity Bogotá bombings, The Bogota Post looks at the state of safety in the city
Seven small bombs have exploded in various parts of the city since the beginning of the year – and no one seems to know who is behind them.
The latest such attack, and the most severe, took place on Wednesday, March 11, in the south of the city. The bomb exploded near a group of police, injuring five officers and two civilians, according to reports.
On the evening of March 2, another bomb went off near an SITP bus in in Bogota’s Engativa district, injuring four people, including a 6-month-old infant.
Just four days later, an explosion outside a bank in Teusaquillo in the early hours of March 6 shattered the windows of several nearby buildings.
Most of these bombs are caused by modified petardos, or firecrackers, while a few are more sophisticated, according to reports.
No one knows if the explosions are related, or just the work of hooligans, but police say it could be National Liberation Army (ELN) guerrillas trying to make a statement.
National Police Chief Rodolfo Palomino said earlier this month that the rebels may be behind the Teusaquillo bombing and another in nearby Parkway outside the office of a right-wing fringe political party in late February.
686 Bogotá burglaries in two months
In January and February this year, authorities reported a staggering 686 burglaries in Bogota. That’s an average of 11 in the city each day, according to a study into Bogota’s security situation conducted by Caracol Radio.
The report found that most of the thefts take place on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays between 12 noon and 12 midnight.
Money, jewellery and tech equipment are the most sought-after items by criminals who are most active in Suba, Usaquen, Kennedy and Engativa.
The most common method to enter a home is by using master keys, with 27 percent of burglaries occurring in this way. Nineteen percent of criminals are able to access homes due to the carelessness of inhabitants, and a further 18 percent gain access through breaking and entering, according to the Caracol study.
In an attempt to improve security, police will be setting up “mobile reporting sites” where victims can report the crimes more easily.
Look for the latest edition of the Bogota Post throughout the city in the coming days