By AVA TURNQUEST
Tribune Chief Reporter
NATIONAL Security Minister Marvin Dames yesterday said overall crime was trending down with officials eyeing "some measure of success" for new initiatives set for 2018.
"From an enforcement standpoint," he told reporters outside the Cabinet Office, "we're seeing some measure of success, we're not there yet, we're not saying that this is the panacea but [gun] seizures are certainly up, the targeting of drug houses in these at-risk communities are up, and officers are yielding tremendous success."
Mr Dames continued: "So the law enforcement [officers] are really improving in their strategic outlay. I'm quite pleased and there's still a way to go, and you're seeing that over the last few weeks as it relates to the more violent crimes."
According to The Tribune's records, there have been 117 murders for the year, with the last reported incident on October 26 when a woman's partially decomposed body was found in bushes in Abaco. Police opened a murder investigation and a man has been arraigned in connection with her death.
This marks 43 percent increase in the number of homicides recorded by October 26, 2016 when there were 82 killings, according to our records.
"It all depends on where you are measuring from," Mr Dames said when asked whether crime was down, "but I can say certainly in the last few weeks a month or so that we've been seeing some very encouraging results. Have we arrived, we're far from it, but it certainly begins to set the stage for 2018."
He continued: "Crime on the whole overall is down and you're going to see some very encouraging stats beginning of next year. The commissioner now is currently working on annual plan for 2018 which will be laid on time in Parliament for everyone to see.
"That will speak to any number of concerns over the previous year.
"But I always mention it's the homicides that have been a serious concern so the officers have concentrated on that in a very strategic and sustained way and we've seen some positive signs, some, we're not there yet we have a long way to go but we certainly headed in the right direction."