Shelter shootings show vandalism persists
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Saturday night fever:
A woman waits at a Transjakarta stop with a broken window in East Jakarta on Sunday. A person firing an air gun broke windows at several bus stops on Saturday.
Four Transjakarta busway shelters on Corridor 9 serving Pinang Ranti-Pluit on Jl. MT Haryono in East Jakarta were shot at by an unidentified gunman on Saturday night. The incident marked another act of vandalism against public facilities in the city.
East Jakarta Police criminal investigation unit chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Dian Perri said that the shooter had likely used an airsoft gun.
“Given the cracks on the windows, the shooter probably used an air rifle. Based on witness reports, none of them heard a gunshot, so the perpetrators probably did not use firearms.”
Dian said that during questioning, the witnesses told him that the shots came from a moving car that was seen fleeing after the shooting.
“We’re still investigating the incident. We’re not sure what type of car the shooters used or its license plate number,” he said.
The shooter fired at the Cawang Otista, Cawang Ciliwung, Cawang Station and Tebet BKPN shelters at Corridor 9 a few minutes after Transjakarta operating hours, at around 11 p.m.
Some officers were still on duty when the incident took place, but none were injured. They were M. Syarif, a security officer at the Cawang Ciliwung shelter and Sarwani, also a security officer at Cawang Otista shelter.
A lower glass window at Cawang Ciliwung shelter was broken, while two windows and a glass door at Cawang Otista shelter were also damanged due to the shooting.
Muhammad Akbar, head of the Transjakarta BRT Management Authority (BLU), said that the incident had not disrupted the operation of Transjakarta along Corridor 9, as the next morning the service carried on as usual.
Although the BLU would not increase its safety measures, Akbar had asked officers at every shelter to be more vigilant and be more communicative with passengers. “I don’t know the reason behind the shooting. We will let the police handle this. I know the passengers must be uncomfortable with the incident, but I have asked all officers at the shelters to be more alert,” he said.
Akbar added that the total loss from the incident was calculated to reach around Rp 20 million (US$ 2,114). “We’re still calculating the loss, but we predict it will be around Rp 20 million,” he said.
Saturday night’s shooting was not the first. A shooting also took place on Sunday, July 29, at Tebet BKPM shelter, creating a small hole on the shelter’s automatic door.
Vandalism toward public facilities is apparently very common in the capital. Besides the shootings, Transjakarta buses have often become the target of angry people for hitting pedestrians or motorists.
Last month, an angry mob attacked a Transjakarta bus after it hit a 10-year-old boy in front of a mosque on Jl. Mampang Prapatan Raya in South Jakarta. People became angry, throwing rocks at the bus and damaging its windows and body.
Police were unable to prevent the damage, but have had more success on other occasions, managing to prevent a Transjakarta bus from being set alight by an angry mob.
Another example was when a group of Jakmania members formed a convoy of motorcycles. Due to heavy traffic conditions, most of the motorcycles used the Transjakarta lanes. Although the Transjakarta bus driver had sounded the horn to warn them, they did not move until the bus hit one of the motorists.
Seeking retribution, some members attacked the bus, driver and the officer onboard.
Commuter trains have also become the target of vandals. In June last year, passengers at Jakarta Kota station became angry because of a delayed economy train.