Thursday, Dec 13, 2018
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Police: The Bahamas is safe

Assistant Commissioner of Police Clayton Fernander holds up a photo of a male suspect during a press conference at the Paul H. Farquharson Conference Centre yesterday. Also in attendance at the press conference were Assistant Commissioner Stephen Dean (left) and Acting Commissioner of Police Emerick Seymour.

Acting Commissioner of Police Emrick Seymour yesterday assured Bahamians that authorities will change their operational strategies in response to the spate of recent murders, and will continue to increase efforts behind the scenes to keep the pressure on criminals throughout The Bahamas.

There have been six murders since Saturday.

Three people were murdered within 24 hours over the weekend.

Three more men were killed between Monday night and yesterday afternoon. Another was in hospital after he was shot.

Addressing the media at Police Headquarters ahead of the latest murder, Seymour and the executive management team of the Royal Bahamas Police Force (RBPF) sought to quash concerns that the five murders in four days was an indication of an uptick.

“Notwithstanding these incidents, members of the public can be assured that their police department is working assiduously to resolve these incidents, which is in keeping with our mandate – the prevention and detection of crime,” he said.

Seymour said four people being arraigned for separate murders on Monday is reflective of the RBPF’s commitment to resolving these crimes. He also said police were following several leads into the recent murders and expects to resolve them in “short order”.

According to Seymour, the public does see the efforts behind the scenes, which will be ramped up.

“Members of the public can expect the police department to intensify its efforts going forward on the streets as we move resolutely in our policing efforts in addressing, not only these recent incidents, but all acts of criminality that are brought to our attention,” he said.

“They can rest assured that Nassau and indeed, the entire Bahamas, is a safe place for all of us.”

Two men were shot on Cox Street, Fox Hill around 6 p.m. yesterday. One of the men died on scene. The other was in hospital.

A security officer at A. F. Adderley Junior High School was shot and killed on Tuesday around 4 a.m., after gunmen walked onto the premises and confronted the employee, before shooting him in his vehicle.

A man was shot dead on Step Street, Fox Hill on Monday around 10 p.m.

The victim was walking along the street when a dark-colored vehicle pulled up alongside him. He was speaking with the occupants of the vehicle when one of them shot him.

Authorities reported that around 10 p.m. on Saturday, Wilton Alexander Brown, 48, a taxi driver, was shot dead at his home off Cowpen Road. He arrived at his Hollywood Subdivision home with his children when a vehicle pulled up behind them.

A gunman exited the vehicle and demanded cash from Brown. After the robber searched Brown’s pockets, he shot him before fleeing.

Two men were shot at a barber shop on Jerome Avenue, off Pyfrom Road, shortly after 10 a.m. on Saturday. One died on the scene, while the other died in hospital.

According to Assistant Commissioner of Police Clayton Fernander, there is no connection among the incidents, excluding the Cox Street murder.

He said with, respect to the security guard, police suspect it was an armed robbery.

He also said police understand the man shot dead in Fox Hill knew his killer, and the motive was “something personal”.

With respect to Brown’s murder, Fernander said police believe armed robbery was the motive.

Police suspect the double murder on Saturday was gang retaliation, according to Fernander.

There have been 48 murders for 2018. There were 69 murders in the same period last year.

It was pointed out to National Security Minister Marvin Dames this week that the margin of decrease year-on-year has narrowed in recent months, from a 47 percent decrease in murders as of February, to a 32 percent decrease as of June 10.

Echoing the minister’s statement, Seymour and Fernander said as authorities introduce their medium and long-term strategies, murders and crime overall are expected to continue to trend downward.

“We are not boasting; one homicide is too much,” Fernander said.

Asked about the specific operational changes, Seymour said, “Be assured that we have, in fact, made some already.

“Of course, we don’t want to televise what it is we want to do, but be assured we are paying attention and adjusting accordingly. We are satisfied with the direction in which we are going.

“We will definitely see more of it as the days and weeks role ahead.”

Authorities were unable to provide the latest data on armed robberies.

Wanted

Authorities were yesterday searching for 10 men for questioning in connection with murder, attempted murder and armed robbery.

Those wanted for questioning in connection to murder include: Alfred George, 28, of Knowles Drive; Kerby Pierre, 24, of Bacardi Road; Perry Pickering, 25, of Dorsette Alley, who police believe is hiding out in Bimini; and a man, who police had a sketch and photo of.

Police were also searching for Shelman McKinney, 26, of Mount Tabor; Cordell Smith, 43, of Forbes Street Nassau Village; Edward Colebrooke, 18, of Coconut Grove; and another man, who had not been formally identified, all for questioning in connection with armed robbery.

Additionally, authorities want to question Franklyn Dean Jr., 24, of Eaton Road, Yellow Elder Gardens, in connection to a recent attempted murder.

 

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