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PM: Focus must be on prevention rather than detection in crime fight 

While describing the sharp uptick in serious crimes as “alarming”, Prime Minister Philip Davis yesterday assured that the government will do everything it can to address crime in The Bahamas.

On Tuesday, Commissioner of Police Clayton Fernander revealed that there has been a 21 percent increase in murders and 46 percent increase in armed robberies.

Responding to this, the prime minister said, “[It’s] alarming. We don’t embrace it. We’re going to do all that we can to try to reverse that trend. We start not from after the murders have taken place.

“We’re going to put more emphasis in prevention rather than detection because we think that if we work to identify the root causes of the challenges our young people are having, that lead them to do what they are doing, we will be more successful.”

Davis said too much emphasis has been placed on detecting crime rather than preventing it.

He said the government is collaborating with the commissioner of police and other stakeholders to address the issue.

“When we come up with a plan, you will hear from us,” Davis said.

The crime situation, particularly on New Providence, remains a public concern as The Bahamas appears on track to beat its 2015 record when 146 murders were recorded.

The murder count stands at 85. Last year this time, there were 70 murders.

Data provided by Fernander shows that the majority of murders (75) happened on New Providence.

Nine murders happened on Grand Bahama and one on a Family Island.

The bulk of the murders on New Providence happened in the southern division, in the area known as the Grove, according to the commissioner.

Other murder hotspots include Kemp Road, Nassau Village, Carmichael Road, South Beach and Cowpen Road.

Fernander said many of the men who were killed were on bail for murder, armed robberies and other serious crimes.

“Shortly after they are released from prison, they are dead,” he said.

“Based on our intel, we suspect that the suspects for that are the rival gangs. Their enemies are responsible for that. Again, you can see that the solvency rate is 58 percent. Yes, we find them and put them behind bars.”

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Jasper Ward

Jasper Ward started at The Nassau Guardian in September 2018. Ward covers a wide range of national and social issues. Education: Goldsmiths, University of London, MA in Race, Media and Social Justice

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