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Nottage: Crime Down By 29%

Former National Security Minister Dr Bernard Nottage.

Former National Security Minister Dr Bernard Nottage.

By RASHAD ROLLE

Tribune Staff Reporter

rrolle@tribunemedia.net

HOURS after police were called to the country’s latest homicide scene, Minister of National Security Dr Bernard Nottage announced that overall crime is down 29 per cent compared to the first half of last year.

According to statistics he presented in the House of Assembly yesterday, from January 1, 2016 to June 14, 2016 murders fell by 22 per cent.

The figures show that 69 murders had been recorded by that time in 2015, compared to 54 as of June 14 this year.

However, yesterday morning’s killing and a second at about 10pm last night pushed the murder count to 58 for the year compared to 71 killings as of June 20, 2015. This means murders are down 20 per cent compared to last year at this time, according to The Tribune’s calculations. Last year, the country hit a homicide record, with police recording 146 murders in 2015.

Dr Nottage also said there has been a nine per cent decrease in attempted murder; a 15 per cent decrease in rape; a 38 per cent decrease in attempted rape; a 21 per cent decrease in armed robbery, and an 18 per cent decrease in robbery.

Crimes against the person that saw an increase in the specified period include manslaughter, which jumped by 100 per cent; unlawful sexual intercourse which rose by 10 per cent, and a 50 per cent increase in attempted robbery.

In the area of crimes against the property, he said there has also been a 48 per cent decrease in burglary; a 34 per cent decrease in housebreaking; an eight per cent decrease in shop-breaking; a 35 per cent decrease in stealing; a 39 per cent decrease in stealing from vehicles and a 17 per cent decrease in stolen vehicles.

“Overall crime has decreased from 2012 to 2015,” Dr Nottage said, showing graphs that indicate crime has declined from 11,706 incidents in 2012 to 8,475 incidents in 2015.

The Bain Town & Grants Town MP stressed that the government still will not be satisfied until a much more dramatic reduction in violent crime occurs even as he released statistics that indicate crime is trending downward.

Dr Nottage has sometimes been described as tone-deaf for how he discusses crime trends, struggling, some say, to tread the line between admitting that violent crime remains one of the country’s most significant problems and insisting that the ongoing strategies authorities are employing are having a positive affect on curbing crime levels.

He acknowledged yesterday the fear many Bahamians have about crime and he pledged to communicate more often with the public about police efforts to address the problem.

“Although a downward trend indicates our efforts are having an impact on crime overall, we are focused on addressing several categories of violent crime, particularly murders, rape and armed robberies,” he said. “We mourn with the families of those that have been impacted by violent crime. We have not lost touch with the level of fear and frustration many Bahamians currently experience concerning the unacceptable level of crime in our nation. “And the public will be hearing from us more regularly now about crime trends and our efforts to address them and the impact of our responses.”

He added: “A week ago when I indicated to a reporter who asked about crime that overall there was a decline in crime, members of the opposition took the opportunity in and out of this place to suggest that I was saying something that was unsympathetic to the crimes that are going on.

“Let me acknowledge as I did with the reporter that we are not satisfied with the results of the incidents of crimes, particularly serious crimes like homicides, like armed robberies, even though armed robberies are down. We are working diligently to bring crime down.”

As Dr Nottage spoke, seated members of the opposition indicated that they were not satisfied with the government’s efforts.

“Work a little harder,” one said, adding: “One person just got shot in the head this morning.”

The Progressive Liberal Party campaigned on crime at the 2012 election, drawing attention to “490 plus” murders in the five years under the Free National Movement government. Yesterday’s fatal shooting off Market Street took the total of homicides in four years and a month under the Christie administration to 515.

Comments

Honestman 1 year, 5 months ago

I really don't want to be negative but it sure doesn't FEEL as if crime is down by 29% Also we are dealing here with reported crimes. What about all the other crimes that go unreported? If you ask most people about crime in The Bahamas today they will tell you that it HAS NEVER BEEN SO BAD. I don't take much comfort from these statistics.

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DDK 1 year, 5 months ago

The Minister will just give the crazies ammunition to go out and increase their numbers!!! He just does not get it. The crime rate in the Bahamas is nothing to brag about. I understand it is on the upswing in the Family Islands as well. We are on the "do not visit" or "visit with caution" lists of too many countries as it stands.

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sp1nks 1 year, 5 months ago

CRIME IS DOWN 100% FROM 3 MINUTES AGO!!!

Dr. Nottage should be embarrassed to suggest that crime is down from such a small measurement. This only demonstrates desperation in framing the crime discussion. Did he include the two murders that occurred only hours earlier? The current crime levels bring little comfort to citizens. Ultimately, that should be the measure of progress.

Nottage and Christie; apathetic, out of touch, out of ideas

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sheeprunner12 1 year, 5 months ago

Crime statistics may reflect that crime is down ......... but who and what is being reported as "crime"??????? .................. it may be just like the presentation of the Budget ....... its like a game of statistical accounting gymnastics

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proudloudandfnm 1 year, 5 months ago

Crime is most definitely not down.

He is lying.

It is election season.

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Tarzan 1 year, 5 months ago

This is simply pathetic. Does this government actually think anyone believes anything they say?

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TalRussell 1 year, 5 months ago

Comrades! Any time we have a life-threatening diagnosis, shouldn’t we tell our doctor that we’re going be seeking a second opinion?
The views and conclusions presented in this 29% reduction in The Bahamaland's crime report are those of the minister’s hired guns authors alone, not those of a clear majority of citizens, residents and tourists - who go about their daily lives while forced to live in constant fear of engaging life-threatening criminal thugs - who are hell-bent on inflicting them with deadly bodily harm.
I'm supposing the ever present animal thugs waiting sprungs their fear upon innocent victims, must be on another list of far different animals than does those who make it to his 29%?
I’d read somewhere that math is very important for becoming a medical doctor. Da minister of the people’s security must have completely skipped the recommended trigonometry classes?

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Economist 1 year, 5 months ago

Often now people don't bother to report a theft or break in.

If the Police do come, they don't seem to be able to take any real evidence, lack of equipment etc. and if they do you seldom hear of the thief being caught.

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sheeprunner12 1 year, 5 months ago

A study should be made of the preponderance (percent) of unreported crime in the Bahamian society

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RUKiddingMe 1 year, 5 months ago

Even more to the point - the number of reported crimes that the police can't be bothered following up on

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TalRussell 1 year, 5 months ago

Comrade SheepRunner 12, it's safe to say that the majority of sexual assaults in The Bahamaland are not reported to the police.That would mean about 2 out of 3 go unreported.

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John 1 year, 5 months ago

You cannot dispute that murder is down significantly. At the end of March it was down 8% and now it is down by 21% two months later but the other crimes may be due somewhat to an under reporting of crime. For example there is a new drug on the market called flakka or gravel. This causes users to do outrageous things and in areas where is is being used frequently the target is stealing car batteries. Drug users steal car batteries causing over $200.00 and sell them for $10.00. Five dollars to buy the gravel and $5 for something usually marijuana to smoke it in.
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***Sometimes flakka is called "gravel," which sounds cool but not as cool as flakka. A dose of flakka reportedly costs as little of $5, and will make you go completely fucking crazy with "super-human strength" and paranoia, according to Florida news outlets. Below is just a small sample of recent headlines:

·Man on “FLAKKA” tries to break into police headquarters

·Video Shows Fort Lauderdale Streaker After Smoking Flakka

·Naked Lake Worth Sniper Says He Was High on "Flakka," The New Incarnation of Bath Salts

·WATCH: Man on 'Flakka' impaled while trying to climb fence

Like any top tier meme-drug, stuck in a legal no mans land. The powders are only illegal at the state level in a handful of locales, though the Department of Justice issued a temporary ban on alpha-PVP late last year. It's unclear why people started smoking flakka, considering it basically plunges you into a toxic hell for days at a time. Just listen to this doctor:

Many drug dealers are "lacing" regular marijuana with this synthetic, made in China drug' to cause their product to be more addictive. Hence you see so many young people 'tripping out.' Many doctors are treating 'flakka' as cocaine use but it is more dangerous than cocaine. for example it can destroy the kidneys with a single use. Also users become violent and will attack friends or family members and also have a tendency to commit suicide. "This is where the body goes into hyperthermia, generally a temperature of 105 degreees. .The individual becomes psychotic. They often rip off their clothes and run out into the street violently and have an adrenaline-like strength, and police are called and it takes four or five officers to restrain them. Then, once they are restrained, if they don't receive immediate medical attention they can die."


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John 1 year, 5 months ago

What are the side effects of Flakka?

Flakka has many bad side effects, mostly including changes in behavior or mood. Even slight overdoses of Flakka can cause extreme agitation, jerking muscle movements, delirious thoughts, and often profound paranoia. In some of the documented delusions, individuals' experiences are of a typical paranoia, where the drug users feel they are being chased by a large group of people trying to kill them. These patients are a threat to themselves, the people around them, and the first responders (police, EMS) who are there to help them. It is common to hear reports that it takes multiple people to restrain and sedate these patients. Rescue crews and emergency department staff need to give sedatives to these patients to calm them and make them safe.

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BaronInvest 1 year, 5 months ago

If you vote for PLP you'll get a free chicken and crime will go down by another 50% very soon!

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John 1 year, 5 months ago

Even If things pan out and the the murder rate is cut by 22% it will mean a murder count of 116 for the year 2016. This will be 5 murders more than the 111 that occurred in 2012 when the PLP government took office. This will mean that they

FAILED in their promise to reduce the murder rate as no year had less murders under their governance that the years prior to them taking office when they displayed huge bill boards showing a murder count of 490 under the previous government.

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killemwitdakno 1 year, 5 months ago

Require every bar and club arm their bouncer with a AR.

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Jonahbay 1 year, 5 months ago

Crime is steadily out of control... What is down by 29% is Dr. Nottage's grip on reality. I don't want cooked book statistics, I want results. Look at how fast the demon was found who killed Minister Cleare, allegedly Scott Richards and possibly others, not because of stellar police work, but because of CCTV. When will we get serious about crime in this country? When will we put our VAT money to work putting up cameras on every lamp post disguised as something else and have police watching the feeds? When will we utilize drone technology to get "eyes" on a crime scene before the police "arrive"? We all know that when you call the police, they wait for the man with the gun to leave before they come, they ain't trying to get kill. Just how the police got the picture of the man from the CCTV every crime could be solved within hours and we wouldn't have reasonable doubt that maybe the police just picked up someone who looked guilty and charged them with every unsolved murder on the books. These criminals are not smart, they are desperate and they don't care about going to jail. Jail is a vacation for them from their life of misery, of being unwanted and uncared for, of having no opportunity to do something constructive with their life, of being forced to fend for themselves at an early age, of being failed by our own education system. If the Save Our Bahamas movement was serious about their name they would be preaching abstinence and giving out condoms instead of playing hide and seek with the gay marriage bogeyman. The Bahamas is in the doldrums...I shudder to think about 2017 and beyond.

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ThisIsOurs 1 year, 5 months ago

These stats are really silly. They're too shallow, the numbers should include the analysis of patterns. This was clearly shown when as soon as he spoke there were two more murders, should he then go back and adjust his numbers, and come back to the house to report the new rate? The dates are also arbitrary, "June 14th"? What is that? Maybe at June 11th crime was up 30%

This is almost as silly as Shane Gibson and his "20,000 jobs created" estimate based off of the increase in NIB contributions. We say we want an educated populace but they continue to feed them ignorance

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SP 1 year, 5 months ago

............................................ Meanwhile In Cuba ............................................

With 60 foreign investment projects under negotiation "Cuba to build the largest tourist facility in the Caribbean"

http://mexico.shafaqna.com/EN/MX/836345

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John 1 year, 5 months ago

In the government's favor is that several criminals convicted of murder received very heavy but deserving sentences late last year and some this year. Some got jail time of 55 years. And this is when a downward trend started in the murder rate. Once criminals get the clear and decisive message that they will never see freedom if they plan and commit a murder, hits or assassinations, and they get swift justice, the killings will stop for certain.

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John 1 year, 5 months ago

BTW are we about due for another dump fire?

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