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Us Citizens Warned Over Nassau Crime

By RASHAD ROLLE

Tribune Staff Reporter

rrolle@tribunemedia.net

A NEW American warning about crime in the Bahamas expresses concern over home invasions and a recent spike in reported sexual assaults, some which are linked to the loosely regulated water sports industry on Paradise Island.

One American woman was allegedly the victim of a kidnapping and violent sexual assault last month, the warning said.

The US Embassy in Nassau released the alert to US citizens living or travelling to the Bahamas yesterday. It cautioned Americans to be on heightened alert to avoid being victims of crime.

Although the warning noted that US citizens are not targeted directly, the alert said over the past several weeks there has been an increase in the level of crime in areas where US citizens live and frequent.

On the issue of sexual assaults, the embassy noted that police have recently warned women to be vigilant after a recent spike in the number of reported sexual assaults in Nassau.

As for reported instances of sexual assaults involving US citizens, the message said: In October, a US citizen who resides in the Bahamas was kidnapped and violently raped while walking home. The water sports rental industry is only loosely regulated; since July, there have been three reported sexual assaults on US citizens, including minors, by jet ski operators on Paradise Island.

The embassy also said criminals are becoming bolder. We also have noticed criminals increasingly becoming more brazen and creative in their methods, the alert said.

It noted that three Americans were victims of armed robberies that occurred in daylight in heavily frequented tourist areas. One of these was a woman walking near Ardastra Gardens, the US Embassy said.

In mid-October during daylight hours in a heavily populated area, two men armed with handguns robbed customers waiting in the drive-thru line at a local restaurant.

Armed assailants have placed random items in the street as impromptu roadblocks so unassuming drivers would stop and could be robbed. A man was shot at Potter’s Cay, near the base of the Paradise Island bridge, at a time when tourists would still be frequenting the area, the warning said.

On home invasions, the statement added: Home invasions in Nassau have become more numerous and violent. A home invasion on October 28 resulted in the murder of the homeowner. In August, a US citizen was the victim of a home invasion and attempted sexual assault in the Cable Beach area.

The US Embassy noted that embassy officials receive an increase in reports of armed robberies, burglaries and other types of crime every holiday season.

US citizens are instructed to be vigilant, to review their security plans and to connect with programmes like the Department of State Smart Traveller Enrolment Programme (STEP) in order to receive regular updates about security issues in this country.

The warning came days after Police Commissioner Ellison Greenslade said crime was trending down and criticised the media’s narrow focus on murder statistics. Crimes are down in all other categories, all major crime categories are down with the exception of that vexing issue and of course we have some issue with attempted murder, he said on Thursday.

Last month, Mr Greenslade also appeared to contradict Chief Superintendant Paul Rolle and Minister of State for National Security Keith Bell, both of whom raised an alarm over a recent spike in reported rapes.

Mr Greenslade said police figures show that reported rapes were down compared to last year.

Comments

GrassRoot 4 years, 8 months ago

am glad that at least a foreign government gives us an appropriate risk assessment of the state of criminal affairs in our country. Thank you U.S.A. I suggest we allow the U.S.A. to continue listening in to all Government phone conversations. It benefits us.

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GrassRoot 4 years, 8 months ago

the ostrich should be our National Bird. Head in the sand and pretending the world evolves around us.

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ThisIsOurs 4 years, 8 months ago

Hopefully not the ones from Ice Age

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MaLambee 4 years, 8 months ago

I hope the authorities take this seriously, other countries will follow in their efforts to keep their citizens safe while visiting the Bahamas.

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reverendrichlive 4 years, 8 months ago

With all churches in Nassau alone, Nassau should relly be " Paradise "...the high crime rate is an indictment on this co-called Christian Counsel and all the churches, who preach and teach a bunch of rubbish. Well, folks, Nassau and indeed the Bahamas is in trouble, once the US and other countries issues this kind of warning to their citizens...lights out.

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ED 4 years, 8 months ago

Sad to point out but while friends and family living abroad were looking forward to spending Chrismas with us in the Bahamas, we have advised them that we will instead join them in the US. We've let them know how dangerous it is to visit here. I will not hide it from them, why would I bring my loved ones back here? I'll take them some pepper sauce, pepper jelly, homemade bread, lobster tails and other seafood, they won't miss a thing (except of course for our beautiful waters)! There is nothing for anyone here anymore. All that is left is a people resigned to be governed by this poor excuse for a government. At most it is a sad, sick circus!

Most embarrassing to our Culture is this Vulgarity they are trying to bring on with this Bahamas Carnival. The costumes are a disgrace and not acceptable, what are we now whores? Where/how is the glory of Junkanoo going to be depicted, on their @SS cheeks? The costumes I saw, looked like they were made for pole dancing.

They are disgracing us at every level. Everytime i sit and ponder a new issue, there is more. It makes my head and heart hurt.

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ThisIsOurs 4 years, 8 months ago

Can you leave some for stranded Tribune readers on your way to the airport?

Seriously, though I am with you on Carnival. I wanted to see a multiday parade and I had in my mind the image of a massive Junkanoo parade, because they kept saying "carnival" was only for marketing..I got n board. At the launch when I saw Music Masters(?) heading to the truck I thought this is great! We're gonna get to rush with a Junkanoo band! Sadly, the band disbanded and the DJ took over. Since that day I've seen more wild and wassiness..tales of parties that turn into giant orgies..., what are we introducing to our nation? Why do we need to tell our sexually active ten year olds (seriously ten year olds) that they need to do badder? I'm surprised at some of the costumes, I thought the Christian Council would have had some input on what could and could not be worn. Our Junkanoo dancers wear sexy attractive costumes but they're not naked or trying to win a who can be the sleaziest contest. Naked isn't necessary. I'm thinking more and more that this entire parade is solely for the benefit of a bunch of tired old nasty men with a few dollars, a Nygard party on a larger scale.

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Emac 4 years, 8 months ago

The greatest weapon we can use to protest this crap parade is by simply boycotting it. Bahamians need to simply not show up. I don't expect that to happen though cause we talk Christianity on one side of our mouth and do the opposite on the other. I am also in the entertainment industry. I can't even begin to express my disgust with leaders of this country and their total disregard for our culture. The argument someone brought to me was that every other country in the Caribbean has a carnival so why not the Bahamas.

I have traveled throughout the Caribbean and Latin America. The one thing that stands out in each of these countries is their native music. You will never hear reggae or rap playing in the streets of Columbia. You know you're gonna be bombarded with reggae music as soon as you step off the plane or ship in Jamaica. But when you arrive in the Bahamas you are immediately confused about what things are indigenous and what things are not.

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themessenger 4 years, 8 months ago

Right on point ED. The level of apathy to which the Bahamian people have sunk is truly distressing. We are governed by gangsters, our lives are controlled by criminals yet probably only one out of every thousand of us is willing to voice their displeasure and disgust. Will the Bahamian people ever regain their voice? We cower grumbling in fear behind our bars and inside our gated communities and allow the few to wreak havoc upon the many. Its time we said enough and do whatever is necessary to force our gangster government to make the radical and draconian changes needed to clean up their act, the judicial system and the country. Repeat offenders you're in for life, corrupt government officials and public servants count on joining them in jail, we have the laws just no enforcement. Unfortunately, knowing my people,things will remain the same and the only judgement we can really hope for will be when The Saviour comes again.

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Straight_Talk_Bahamas 4 years, 8 months ago

Don't worry, once the Haitians are rounded up all will be well in paradise

/sarcasm

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tourist1001 4 years, 8 months ago

I guess won't be taking my two daughters 13 & 14 to the Bahamas to learn how to scuba dive and fish. I guess it is Disneyworld again!! Very disappointed in the Bahamians and their government. You had it all.

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John 4 years, 8 months ago

Well Florida is voting on a bill to legalize marijuana as we speak. Even though they say it is for medical use only, you wont need a prescription to buy weed, How will this affect the Bahamas if it passes. Young folk can drive to Florida and smoke weed legally and party as opposed to coming to the Bahamas to face our crime and risk getting arrested for a joint. I am not advocating legalizing marijuana in the Bahamas. just saying America is doing everything to keep their citizens at home.

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John 4 years, 8 months ago

Florida voters narrowly rejected a plan to legalize medical marijuana, but voters in Washington, D.C., and Oregon both approved recreational pot use by adults, according to preliminary tallies.

Alaska's voters also were considering a measure to tax, regulate and legalize recreational marijuana use, and early returns gave legalization a small lead. As America legalizes weed state by state where does this leave the Bahamas, especially on the issue of drug smuggling

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Emac 4 years, 8 months ago

The Bahamas archaic lawmakers are too busy lining their pockets to even care about what impact these new regulations will have on the Bahamas . These old fogies in power do not have a clue about the new breed of tourists who seek other recreational activities other than water slides and rude workers. The world around our sandbox is changing rapidly and people are choosing to save money by traveling within their own borders for vacation.

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John 4 years, 8 months ago

Florida's medical marijuana initiative, Amendment 2, received more than 50% of the vote, but failed to reach the 60% needed to pass

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John 4 years, 8 months ago

It will take about 5 years and upwards of100 million dollars for a serious government to fix the crime problem in the Bahamas using a multi-pronged approach and a sustained, non-political effort. Government will have to go in to the crime ridden, poverty stricken communities and offer financial assistance, long-term social programs, family redevelopment programs and employment. The mindset of the people, young especially, must be changed to one that views the drug dealer and the criminal as the hero and the role model and the police as they enemy. Persons will have to live within their means and that poverty is a condition that can be overcome. For every million dollars the government spends on policing and law enforcement, it may have to spend ten million on a community effort. Then government has to ensure that there is law and order but it must be visible and effective. When more murderers are walking around the community on bail than those that have been brought to justice and are in jail that sends the wrong signal to potential offenders and revenge seekers. That is a direct indictment on government. Additional courts that were promised to be up and operating over a year ago sheds questionable doubt on the governments seriousness about fighting crime. Need to get qualified social scientist involved and strengthen the male presence in the schools, from an early grade.

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