Crime down? Police report 11% drop in serious crime

…but 41% increase in robbery with violence

The Guyana Police Force (GPF) on Monday reported an 11 per cent decrease in serious crime up to the end of August 2017, when compared to the same period last year.
This was credited to collaborative efforts among stakeholders.
According to the Police Force in its monthly statistics, for the month of August there was an 18 per cent decline in reports of murder with 80 cases in 2017, compared to the same period last year when 98 cases were recorded.
A breakdown of the murder figures showed that 39 of the deaths were as a result of disorderly behaviour, 15 were domestic, 12 were during the course of a robbery, eight were unknown, four were execution-style and two were listed in the ‘others’ category.
Some 27 of the murders were committed in A Division (Georgetown-East Bank Demerara); 19 in B Division (Berbice); seven in C Division (East Coast Demerara); seven also in D Division (West Demerara-East Bank Essequibo); two in E Division (Linden-Kwakwani); a whopping 17 in F Division (Bartica/Interior Locations), and one in G Division (Essequibo Coast-Islands).
With regard to robberies, it was disclosed that gun-related robberies saw a 16 per cent decrease with 402 cases this year compared to 481 cases last year, while there was a five per cent decline in robberies with other instruments –201 cases this year against 212 last year.
The declining pattern continued with an eight per cent reduction in burglary, with 136 cases this year against 148 in 2016, and a 19 per cent decrease in break and enter and larceny, with 712 cases recorded this year compared to 881 cases last year.
Additionally, the number of robberies with no instruments remained the same – 30 cases. Meanwhile, robberies with violence increased by a whopping 41 per cent with 99 cases recorded this year against 70 last year, robbery with aggravation was up by 20 per cent with 54 cases this year and 45 in 2016, and larceny from the person recorded a 27 per cent increase with 104 cases in 2017, compared to 82 last year.
Nevertheless, there was a six per cent decline in rape cases, with 171 cases recorded so far compared to 181 cases last year.
Furthermore, the Police Force reported that some 89 illegal firearms were seized during this period –55 pistols, 11 revolvers, 14 shotguns and nine rifles. It was reported that 40 of these illegal weapons were seized in A Division, seven in B Division, eight in both C and D Divisions, four in E Division, and a staggering 22 in F Division. No weapons were seized in G Division during this period.
Last year, a total of 53 firearms were seized by the Police.
On the other hand, as it relates to traffic, the Police reported that there was a 24 per cent decrease in fatal accidents at the end of August 2017. Meanwhile, serious, minor and damage accidents have also been reduced by 8.3 per cent, 15.2 per cent and 27 per cent respectively.
It was noted that speeding and inattentiveness were the two leading causes of fatal accidents, followed by driving under the influence of alcohol, failing to conform to sign and pedestrian crossing in the path of approaching vehicle.
According to the Force, some 48,936 cases were made out against errant road users during this period. These include: 15,335 cases for speeding; 2548 for breach of condition of road service licence/music; 1278 for driving under the influence of alcohol; 921 for using cell phone while driving; 876 for breach of traffic light signal; 1003 for tinted motor vehicle; 565 for unlicensed driver; 1060 for failing to wear seat belt; 622 for dangerous driving; 613 for careless driving; 469 for failing to wear safety helmet; 1462 for overloaded minibus; 866 for obstruction; 1255 for failing to conform to sign; 920 for crossing double yellow line; and 19,143 cases for other offences.