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I wanted to go tell Safaricom to block the IMEI so that the phone couldn’t be used on their network, and apparently they won’t do that unless you file a police report.
This is what happened when I went to the Central Police Station to report the theft.
TL;DR: it was an very unpleasant experience; somehow they manage to make you feel like a criminal for being the victim of a crime… (╯°□°）╯︵ ┻━┻
Filing a report
Finally he agreed where I had alighted was under their jurisdiction, but said he didn’t have the occurrences book (“OB”) in which to write our report. He then proceeded to check scores of a football match on the radio, and then read through several newspapers. People came in, people went out, conversations went on, etc. One young man was being physically and verbally harassed — apparently he was a security guard and he had been wearing his green uniform sweatshirt while he was off duty. Someone brought him in because the color of the sweatshirt was the same color worn by the Administration Police (AP). I don’t know what happened to him.
Forty five minutes later someone else came in with the book. He handled another guy’s report before mine, a guy who had been selling milk and was robbed of 5,000 shillings and his phone, asking him all sorts of condescending questions and almost like trying to catch him in a lie. When he finally got to me I said I wanted to report that my phone was stolen. Then he accused me of not giving him my name and other details (and he hadn’t even asked for it, wtf!).
When I said I wanted the report so I could take it to Safaricom and have the IMEI blocked, he said that I shouldn’t do that because someone went to the effort to steal it, so why would I want to make it so they couldn’t use it? Also, why didn’t I just give the police a few days and then have them track it down (wink wink, for a fee, of course).
No stamp, cuz Sunday!
In the room, he brought out a blank police report. It was folded and kinda wrinkled. He had to ask around to find a pen. I explained again what had happened, where I alighted, etc, and then wrote the IMEI of the phone on the form (I had brought the original box with me).
Buy me a soda
My friend and I gave some ummms and uhhhhs and looked at each other, and he kept insisting. I tried to tell him that I’ve just been a victim of a crime, why should I pay something? He muttered that next time he should help one of his African countrymen instead. I told him, “Watcha niseme tumeshukuru sana” (lemme just say we’re very grateful). Of course, he kept insisting, so I tried the common Kenyan trick, “Next time…” to which he responded, “Next time utagongwa na bomb” (you’ll be hit with a bomb). Ummmm.
I guess he was just mad, but that’s not something a cop should be able to say to you. In a police station, nonetheless! Anyways, out of the ten or so run-ins I’ve had with the police over the last six years I’ve lived in Kenya, I’ve never felt safer, protected, concerned for, or any of the other things police are supposed to do for you, so this was just par for the course.
Two hours later