A woman taking an afternoon stroll in the zoo, yesterday was the unlucky target of a bandit who snatched her handbag and escaped via a dam linking the Botanical Gardens to Sheriff Street.
A relentless search by several presidential guards on duty at the nearby Castellani House, came up empty handed.
When Stabroek News arrived on the scene around 16:35 hours, approximately 15 minutes after the incident, several heavily armed presidential guards were on the scene. They were the first responders and searched the bushy area along the dam which runs parallel to the Lamaha Canal.
This newspaper was unable to speak to the woman but one of the ranks said she was attacked and robbed in the zoo. It is unclear how the man gained access to the dam but it might have been from through an opening just past the lion’s cage.
The dam can also be accessed from a section of the road leading to the back gate of the gardens.
A concerned citizen blamed the officials of the gardens stressing that they should have ensured that a guard is posted in the zoo and near the dam during the daytime. He said that the perpetrator in yesterday’s incident could have easily concealed himself in the thick bushes alongside the dam until the coast was clear.
The man pointed out that the thief had a good escape plan as he could have easily made it to the roadway.
A police van was also seen patrolling the area.
Security at the gardens has been a concern for persons for some time now. Couples are often robbed while relaxing there.