Molestation down but rioting, theft up at clubs

SINGAPORE - Fewer molestation cases were reported at nightspots during the first nine months of this year, compared with the same period last year.

The police said on Tuesday that there were 68 outrage of modesty cases this year, down from 79 the period before.

However, cases of theft from people and rioting rose. There were 55 such thefts from January to September, up from 50 in the same period last year. There were 13 cases of rioting, an increase of three.

The figures were released ahead of Tuesday night's launch of the Safe Clubbing Campaign, a crime prevention initiative, which has been expanded to include Mink in Raffles Boulevard and 11 venues at Clarke Quay. Last year, it was run at the three megaclubs - Zouk, The Butter Factory and St James Power Station.

Mr Baey Yam Keng, chairman of the Government Parliamentary Committee for Culture, Community and Youth, was guest of honour at the launch held at Zouk. He said that while revellers are having a good time, they must also behave responsibly and not cause harm and losses to other clubbers or damage to property. "Hopefully all (nightspots) will join the effort and see it as their part to combat crime within clubs," he said.

Staff from the clubs attended a police crime prevention workshop last month.

Zouk managing director Esther Soh said club staff must be "adequately trained" and be able to "spot telltale signs of any behaviour that is out of the ordinary".

She added that the club has seen cases of outrage of modesty, theft and fights drop by 30 to 60 per cent since 2009.

Participating nightspots will display new campaign posters with taglines inviting patrons to make choices such as "Lover or molester?", "Dancing or stealing?", "Clubber or fighter?" and "At the bar or behind bars?"

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