Abu Dhabi: A senior police official has urged residents to exercise caution in the elevators or stairwells of residential buildings in Abu Dhabi.
The warning was issued by Brigadier Maktoum Al Sharifi, director of the Capital Police Directorate, following a spate of incidents in which domestic workers were allegedly sexually harassed or raped in elevators.
The accused, a 30-year-old Egyptian man, was recently arrested by Abu Dhabi Police. He is alleged to have stalked domestic workers at night, and cornered them in elevators while threatening them with a kitchen knife. He then molested the workers, or forced them on to a staircase and sexually harassed them before fleeing.
Police officials also said earlier this month that the stalker had beaten some victims, and even threatened to kill them if they fought back or reported the matter to the police. Initial investigations by the police also suggest that the alleged defendant was targeting Asian maids.
Al Sharifi therefore called upon people living in residential buildings to chaperone their children and domestic workers, especially if they were out after dark. He also urged residents to report suspicious building entrants to the security, as well as to insist owners to install proper lighting and security systems in the elevators and stairwells.