City mayor Peterson Francis wants to bring more police officers to the city’s streets, saying the current level of 15 officers isn’t adequate.
Francis has said the additional officers are needed so that the police department can respond quicker to non-violent calls and provide the type of coverage of the city that is expected.
Statistics produced by the police in January 2016, showed an increase of 18 percent in robbery offences, despite there was an overall decrease in reported crimes.
The current number of police have not kept up with the growing city, Francis said. The overall population in Castries, according to 2013 statistics, is 70,000, which is likely much higher today.
“Part of the problem is that I do not think that the Castries City Council (CCC) recognized that we are in charge of the City, so we have to protect the capital,” Francis had said during his swearing in.
The city mayor said he will discuss the issue with Police Chief, Severin Moncherry and explore the possibility of hiring retired police officers, who will also go after litter bugs.
Francis said the new CCC also plans to reinstate beat patrols, so that on every street corner there will be a city police presence in the city, which will help to reduce the level of crime on the streets.
He plans to work closely with the new member of parliament for Castries Central Sarah Flood-Beaubrun to develop a ‘Plan of Action’ to deal with the crime situation in the city.
There has been a number of muggings and other petty crimes occurring in the city for the past several months.