However, as one of these stories involves a man being burned on the face with a cigarette and another involves a railway worker being robbed as he repaired a ticket machine, can ordinary members of the public keep turning a blind eye and taking such chances?
1) From the Deptford News Shopper:
POLICE are appealing for information after a man was burned with a cigarette, forced onto a train and robbed.
The 21-year-old from Plumstead was travelling home from Deptford on January 16 at around 8am after a night shift at work.
As he waited for a train a man approached him making several aggressive demands for money.
When the victim’s train pulled into the station the man forcefully grabbed hold of his arm and stopped him from boarding.
He then burned a cigarette into one of the victim’s cheeks before punching him in the face and on his arms.
As another train arrived at the platform the man pushed the victim on board and threatened to “knife” him.
The man left the train at Maze Hill taking a pair of Sony earphones and £5 from the victim’s pockets.
Police were called at around 9.30am when the victim returned home.
The suspect is described as black, 6ft tall, clean shaven and of slim build.
He was aged between 25 and 28 and was wearing a black jacket, a dark coloured scarf and jeans.
Detective Constable Simon Evans, from the British Transport Police robbery squad, said: “Although rare, we treat incidents like this extremely seriously and we won’t rest until we have made an arrest.
“This was a horrific ordeal for the victim, who was simply trying to make his way home after a night’s work.
“Sadly there is a minority who believe it is acceptable to behave in a criminal and threatening manner and we will do everything in our power to bring them to justice.”
Anyone with any information should call British Transport Police on 0800 40 50 40 quoting incident 120 of 16/01/10 or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
2) From the Croydon Guardian:
British Transport Police are looking for four men who assaulted and robbed a rail worker as he fixed a ticket machine.
Investigators have released CCTV images of four men they would like to speak to after the attack at Norwood Junction station on Sunday, November 29.
Detective Constable Will Livings, one of the investigating officers, said: “The 38-year-old victim was fixing a fault with a ticket vending machine on platform six at the station when he was approached by a group of four men.
“At about 7pm the group approached the member of staff and assaulted him. They then snatched coins which had been placed next to the machine – totalling about £20 – as it was being mended.
“Although the victim didn’t suffer any injuries, this was an intimidating experience for someone just doing his job.
“I would appeal to anyone with any information about the incident or who recognises any of the four men pictured in the CCTV images to contact us.”
Anyone with any information about the robbery is asked to contact BTP on freefone 0800 405040 quoting reference 335 of 29/11/09 or alternatively contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.
3) From the Welwyn Hatfield Times:
A teenage lad had his mobile phone taken in the intimidating attack which happened on board a train bound for Cuffley.
The mugging took place just before midnight on Tuesday, October 27 and police have today (Thursday) released these grainy CCTV images.
Detective constable Mark Sutherland said that the victims, a group of five teenage boys aged between 13 and 14-years-old, were travelling to Cuffley when they were approached by a group of older males.
He said: “At around midnight the victims were threatened by a group of around 10 older youths who demanded that they hand over their mobile phones. “The older youths then stole a phone off one of the teenagers before leaving the train.”
He added: “While the detail in the images isn’t perfect we have been able to isolate stills of two men we would like to speak with in connection with what happened.
“This was a very intimidating experience for the victims, who were left frightened and shaken by the incident. I would encourage anyone who has information to come forward.”
Anyone with any information about the robbery is asked to contact BTP on 0800 40 50 40.