According to this would-be warning message, which is circulating rapidly via social media, criminals are using cutters concealed behind name cards to slash the faces of unsuspecting drivers in order to rob them. The message claims that the criminals are knocking on car windows while holding a name card, supposedly to ask for directions. But, claims the message, the criminals will use a knife hidden behind the card to cut victims thereby incapacitating them so that their belongings can be stolen from the car. Supposedly, the information comes via police and 6 drivers have already filed police reports about such attacks. The warning comes complete with a very graphic image supposedly depicting one of the drivers with a slashed face.
The message first emerged in Singapore in early 2014, but is now once again gaining momentum.
However, there are no credible police or media reports that confirm that attacks like the ones described are actually happening. In fact, the Singapore Police Force dismissed the message as untrue, noting in a February 2014 Facebook post:
“Cutters disguised as name cards used to slash and rob car owners”
We note that a text message has been circulating alleging that several cases of slashing and robbery targeted at car drivers had occurred. Police have checked and confirmed that no reports have been lodged on such incident.
While it is understandable to warn friends and loved ones from becoming a victim of crime, the public is advised to first check on the truth of the information before sharing it. We would like to advise the public against spreading unsubstantiated information which may generate unnecessary public alarm, causing fear and panic in the community.
If anyone has information relating to any crime committed, please lodge a police report so that police can look into the matter.
The most current version attempts to add weight to its spurious claims by including the image of the man with a slashed face. However, the image does not depict the victim of such a card cutter robbery attempt. Instead, it shows London Rene, the boyfriend of ‘Mob Wives’ star Natalie Guercio. London Rene was injured in a knife attack that took place in a Brooklyn nightclub in late 2014.
Of course, it is not impossible that a callous thief might use such a tactic to rob victims. And, drivers should certainly be a little cautious of strangers who approach their car. However, as noted, there are no police reports that confirm that such attacks are commonly occurring and the message deliberately and wilfully attempts to mislead recipients by adding an image depicting an injury totally unrelated to the supposed card cutter incidents.
Spreading false and misleading information will help nobody.
Just now, according to info received from a traffic police friend, there are already six car owners made police reports, if there is someone holding a name card and knock at your car window asking for direction. Please do not open your car window, as there is a cutter placed under the name card which is used for slashing victim’s face and rob. Please be extra careful! Kindly convey this message! Please also send to those who are not driving too, for the sake of their friends who are driving!
Last updated: January 25, 2016
First published: January 25, 2016
By Brett M. Christensen