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Police official reports increase in crime, but minister says symposium won’t be just talk

By SNO Staff

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St Lucia’s National Security Minister Hermangild Francis

As stakeholders met to reason on how best to deal with crime at the much talked about opposition-proposed crime symposium on Friday, Nov. 24, authorities have reported an increase in various categories of crime in Saint Lucia for 2017.

Acting Superintendent of Police in charge of the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) press unit, Elvis Thomas, said at the symposium that January to September 2017 saw the highest detection rate of 56 percent of accepted crimes.

He said that the highest number of cases came under summary offenses at 55 percent and offenses against property stood at 23 percent. The crimes against persons category recorded 16 percent. These three mentioned groups makes up 94 percent of total crimes on the island. The north has recorded 36 percent of that total amount. The south has 33 percent and the central segment of the island recorded 31 percent.

Firearm-related offenses increased in 2017, although they have shown fluctuations between 2013 and 2017. The year with the most offenses of that nature was 2014 and the lowest year was 2015.

The total number of murders for 2017 is 54.

Meanwhile, National Security Minister gave the assurance that the symposium would not just be all talk and was optimistic that some solid recommendations would come out of the symposium.

“I understand what’s happening. I empathise with a lot of persons. I have been in the crime fighting position before. I am now a minister and I think that I have a job to be done but I cannot do it alone. The days for persons believing that we are the repository of all information and ideas, I don’t ascribe to that at all. So this why I took the idea from the Honorable Phillip J. Pierre when he mooted it in the House of Assembly….so this is my motivation. So I want to thank the Honourable Philip J. Pierre for giving me the idea and I do hope and pray that at the end of today that we will come out with recommendations that we can implement for the betterment of St. Lucia,” he added.

Meanwhile, Opposition Leader Philip J. Pierre said the symposium serves as a powerful statement in the fight against crime.

“We must be truthful; we cannot reduce crime if we do not observe the law and the spirit of the law. We must end stigmatisation of people because of their place of residence or their beliefs or affiliations. A critical starting point is that there is a clear signal that we are prepared to be serious in fighting crime. This gathering can be a powerful statement but must never be for the sake of optics or photo-ops or show for talking point. It must be a serious engagement [and] a determined effort to bring out sections of the community together to study the problems and share thoughts and ideas, he said.

Economic Development Minister Guy Joseph, who represented the Prime Minister Allen Chastanet at the forum, said that respect for police and the law is important in reducing crime.

“As a child growing up, when you saw a uniformed police officer, you conducted yourself in a particular manner. The society is a different society today. Obscene language has become the order of the day. And it has almost become a part of the acceptable vocabulary in St. Lucia. And we tolerate and … accept these things as if they mean nothing…. Whether you like a police office or not, his uniform demands a certain measure of respect that must be shown,” Joseph said, adding that a lack of respect of police will make it difficult to enforce the law.

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5 comments

  1. Talk, talk, talk!

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  2. Show some class and some patriotism Release the IMPACS report and then resign. You have failed miserably. Your failure is killing us.

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  3. This is a strange an interesting recipe. Philip Pierre served in three labour government administrations once as high as deputy Prime Minister and he has acted as Prime Minister on many occasions yet he never mooted the idea of a symposium to his own party when in power.

    Mr. Francis are you in the reality or the naive. The SLP's goal is to return to power. They are showing it big time. They will take any course of action. Kenny says no peace and the public must be ready to fight against DSH. That and many other things has indicated their determination to quickly ascend to power.

    Flambeau's single greatest challenge now is likely crime. Will the SLP now reverse that by genuinely holding Flambeau's hand and help guide them successfully against crime so as to make easier Flambeau's chances at the next election? Ummmmm interesting.

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  4. No you wrong My minister Guy Joseph...Lack of respect for law enforcement will not make it difficult to enforce the law,because you see when children dont listen the first thing you do is give them a time out,a curfew.You install cctv cameras big ones"Then you get business owners to install alarms on their businessesThen you get home owners to install iron bars on doors and windows.Then you get a bill board like the one in Times Square they call it a Tv Scren to cover the whole of St.Lucia.Then you send the SSU to conduct house searches,then you do traffic road blocks,where you search for alcohol intoxication drugs and gun's.Then you put police on the beat walk the streets they call it.Then if this dont work,the son of a bitcges braver than Rambo...Then you just start killing them 1 by one....Whos street's the law abiding tax payer's streets,these streets dont belong to the criminals my minister Guy Joseph....So stop giving the criminals breaks,1 is to much 53 is to many,now am mad as hell and am tired.

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    • Please don't get me wrong but first of all you need to get yourself a dictionary or get auto correct. Your comments are so difficult to read. After a comma and or a full stop you hit the space bar.

      Now for the so call crime symposium.

      Once you're going to Categorise Crime, well do you expect to happen? Crime in Lucia will never stop not until we start with the BIGGER HEADS first and the Corrupt Police Officers because without that happening crime will continue to be on the rise in Lucia without a doubt. They keep arresting the guys on the street for 1 stick on Marijuana whiles the Cocaine, Weapons and Ammunitions get transported in government vehicles.

      All these Politrickians are jokers whether SLP or UWP (Wolf in sheep clothing). The people on the streets are the ones seeing and knowing everything. Did they not think of getting some input from the general public because they are the ones mostly getting affected by what is happening in the country. If they can see the ones who are suppose to lead by example do the wrong things and get away with it, what are you expecting them to do? They will eventually do the same due to the economic status in the country, which everyone seems to be crying about.

      In what direction do you expect Lucia to head when you have these JOKERS bashing the Minister Sarah on tele for speaking about what a family structure SHOULD be in not just Lucia but the Caribbean. Yes, family (Father and Mother) (Male and Female) 100% CARIFAM.

      We LUCIANS have to take the lip and not depend on the government to do every or anything for that matter. Let these CLOWNS know that the power is in the hands of the people of St. Lucia. There's so much that can be said on this matter but it will only be pushed a said like the ones before it.

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