By Kadeem Joseph
A youth mentor and advocate whose business was the target of a recent robbery believes that more needs to be done to address the greater issues facing young men in society that would lead them to such behaviour.
Khalid Shabazz, the owner of K DOG’S Café – located at the Dredgers Cricket Field – said that he awoke on Monday morning to alerts from his security system when he saw video of two young men who had broken into the establishment.
Shabazz said this incident points to a greater issue, and added that, if the young men are caught, he would be willing to assist them, rather than see them fall into the penal system.
“To get yourself in trouble for a few measly dollars and have to go to jail and stuff like that, it’s not worth it,” he said. “If it is that they catch them, if there is something I can do to be able assist them, I will do that.”
The mentor said there is still a large number of young men who may be considered juvenile delinquents who are unskilled, untrained and have chosen the “path of least resistance” in order to survive.
He said these young men may be having a difficult time, just as their parents may be having a difficult time brought on by the pandemic or general economic pressures.
Shabazz suggests that while the government should take the lead on remedying such social issues, a societal approach is required.
He said while some may begin engaging in what may be considered minor crimes, these youths may continue into a life of crime.
“We want to try to arrest these situations and not necessarily arrest them so that we can have a better society,” he added, noting that the perpetrators could have been in their teens based on their appearance. “I don’t think that any children or child is born bad; a lot of times they are victims of circumstances.”
The police are still appealing for the public’s assistance in identifying the two young men suspected of breaking into K DOG’S Café.
With videos of the incident widely shared earlier this week, the police have issued an appeal for help identifying the men.
According to Shabazz, the men made off with drinks, snack items and also removed the wireless camera from the business. He said it was not the first time that his business has been robbed.