Tue | Nov 28, 2023

Charge pranksters with attempted robbery

Published:Saturday | March 18, 2023 | 12:11 AM


In a bid to amass views and likes, some Jamaican social media personalities have been bordering on criminality. This comes in the form of ‘pranks’, where a hidden camera records someone doing or saying things to unsuspecting individuals to cause them to believe what is said or done is real.

The pranking phenomenon has reached a whole new level to the point where pranksters have been hurt and locked up. In recent times, there have been videos circulating where pranksters pretend to have firearms, remove licence plates, pretend to be robbers, and a host of tricks that not everyone accepts as funny. The challenge that pranksters have embarked on is to top their previous prank by becoming more extreme.

The sad part of this joke is as the saying of the crab “what is joke to you is death to me”. One of the pranks saw where an off-duty police officer pulled his firearm on a prankster who was telling another man to hold a bag which contained a gun in it. Another prank saw pranksters pretending to rob persons leaving a bank.

Given Jamaica’s current crime situation, these pranks are not funny. We have heard of actual robberies of people leaving banks and automated teller machines (ATMs). In one of the recent incidents, a police inspector was shot at an ATM in St Catherine. These so-called jokes, if continued, will make a lawyer, a funeral home and a bammy lady happy. The police should treat these pranks as attempted robberies and the persons recording the ‘prank’ as aiding and abetting or accessories to the offence.

The police should address the situation publicly, making these social media users know that they are flirting with fire. The pranksters will soon get the bright idea to hold up a bank and call it a prank. These pranksters are risking their lives for likes and the people liking these videos are no better than these pranksters. It is ironic that the more we get civilised is the more people find ways to highlight their stupidity.