The Guyana Police Force on Friday reported a steep increase in serious crimes including rapes, robberies and murders.
The statistics in relation to the offences of murder and robbery under arms at the end of August2015 with corresponding statistics for the same period in 2014 are attached. At the end of August 2015 the Guyana Police Force recorded a 12% increase in serious crimes in comparison to the same period in 2014. Among the serious crimes policed by the Force are murder, robbery under arms, robbery with violence, robbery with aggravation, larceny from the person, break and enter and larceny, burglary, rape, and kidnapping. A total of 104 murders were recorded at the end of August 2015 in comparison to 98 murders at the end of August 2014, an increase of 6%. Unto the yesterday, 10th of this month, September 2015, 4more murders have been recorded. At the end of August 2015 robbery under arms overall has increased by 3% in comparison to the same period in 2014. The statistics indicate an increase of 4% in the number of armed robberies involving the use of firearms; while the number of armed robberies where instruments other than firearms were used by the perpetratorsis similar. There has been an increase of 65% in the number of reports of rape with 271reports at the end of August this year compared to 164 for the same period last year. Break and Enter and Larceny and Burglary have shown an overall increase of 13%. Unto the end of August this year, a total of 81 illegal firearms have been recovered by the police comprising 1 sub-machine gun,46 pistols, 21 revolvers, 6 shotguns, 6 rifles and 1 pen-gun. This compares to a total of 53 illegal firearms that were recovered unto this time last year. In relation to the firearm amnesty, further to the Police Force's Press Release that was made on September 08, 2015, unto yesterday September 10, 2015, additionally two (2) 16 gauge shotguns and 2 matching cartridges were handed in to "F" Division; two (2) air rifles and one (1) .32 pistol with 2 matching rounds were received in "A" Division; and a .22 air rifle was surrendered in "E" Division (Linden/Kwakwani). The Police Force is continuing in its efforts aimed at crime prevention through its police-community partnership programme, along with social crime prevention interventions in the Policing Divisions, with special emphasis on empowering youths. During last month interaction between the police and youths attached to Police Youth Clubs in "A" Division (Georgetown/East Bank Demerara) saw a number of children being involved in a spelling bee competition, educational talks focusing on motivation, nutrition and healthy living, visits to places of interest such as the National Park and the Zoo, softball cricket and other recreational activities and training sessions in information technology, fire prevention and first aid. The Division also held its inaugural Ms. Youth Ambassador Pageant 2015 on August 15, 2015, at the St. Stanislaus College, Georgetown, where Miss Onica Lynch from the Albouystown Group was crowned Ms. Youth Ambassador 2015. In "B" Division (Berbice) the police donated sports gears comprising two prefab football goals along with nets and a football to the community of Angoy's Avenue, New Amsterdam, in further efforts to boost police community relations. The Division will also be making efforts to assist with the improvement of the playground in the community. On August 27, 2015, the police in "D" Division (West Demerara/East Bank Essequibo) launched its "See Something, Say Something" initiative under the Divisional C-PETS programme in its quest to reduce crime. The initiative is in collaboration with the faith-based leaders attached to the Cops and Faith Community Network. During the launching of the initiative at the Tuschen Car Park, East Bank Essequibo, the police conducted a back-to-school distribution exercise where a number of children received backpacks with school stationery and water bottles. In "E" Division (Linden/Kwakwani) a football tournament among 14 teams from Police Youth Clubs was held at the Bayroc Community Centre Ground, Wismar; a day of sports was also held at Silver Hill, Soesdyke/Linden Highway; and the youths were involved in first aid training and a workshop on Peer Pressure as well as a cheese straw making competition. In "F" Division (Interior Locations) a three-week community project was conducted at Itabali, Mazaruni, between August 02 and 23, 2015. The project involved 64 youths from the Purple Heart Police Youth Group where they were engaged in skills training, craftwork, sports and educational talks. On August 03, 2015, the police in "G" Division (Essequibo Coast and Islands) launched a four-week empowerment project for 23 youths from the Dartmouth community during which they will be exposed to home economic skills at the Essequibo Technical Institute. Upon the successful completion of the programme the youths will be certified by the Carnegie School of Home Economics. Divisional Commanders also held a number of community outreach meetings where issues and concerns raised by members of the public were addressed. During August 2015 there was a total of twenty four (24) interventions supported by the religious community in the Cops and Faith Community Network which treats with juvenile first offenders for minor crimes as a preemptive intervention to the New Opportunity Corps. Since the launch of the Cops and Faith Community Network in September 2013 and unto August 31, 2015, there has been a total of 210 such interventions. In all cases the youths were counseled by the religious leaders and following the involvement of parents/guardians, and the victims where necessary, the majority of them were warned and sent away. In relation to the Family Liaison for victims of serious crimes and domestic violence project, which is also under the Cops and Faith Community Network, there were seventeen (17) interventions by members of the religious community in response toattempt suicide, and several cases of serious crimes including armed robbery and murder where the affected persons, victims and relatives, were counseled. A number of police ranks who were involved in incidents where they came under fire while responding to reports were also counseled by the religious leaders. In relation to traffic,80 road fatalities from 66 accidents have been recorded at the end of August 2015, in comparison to 89 fatalities from 82 accidents for the same period in 2014, a decrease of 10%. There have also been decreases in all other categories of road accidents – serious, minor and damage. Pedestrianshas been the main category of road users affected so far in road fatalities with 28 such persons having lost their lives at the end of August2015. In addition 6 pedal cyclists, 21 persons in motor vehicles, 11 motor cyclists, 10 drivers, 3 pillion riders and 1 person who was being towed on a bicyclealso lost their lives. Speeding has been the major contributory factor to fatal accidents, having been the cause of 31 of the 66 fatal accidents unto August 2015. Traffic enforcement by the police has resulted in a total of 37,545 cases for this year being made against errant motorists at the end of August 2015; of this total 15,640 cases were for speeding, 1,251 for driving under the influence of alcohol, 398 for using cell phone while driving and 1,034 for failing to wear seat belt. Unto yesterday Thursday September 10, 2015, there has been one (1) road fatality recorded for September 2015.