Murders up 16 percent in Bahamas

There were 72 murders recorded during this period compared to the 62 murders recorded last year.

There were ten murders in January, 15 in February, 12 in March, 11 in April, 15 in May and nine this month.

The most recent victim, who was out on bail on a murder charge and being electronically monitored, was shot dead on Sunday night, police said.

Yesterday, police classified the death of a woman, who was struck by avehicle outside a bar she worked at on Saturday, as a murder.

National Security Minister Dr Bernard Nottage was expected to speak about crime trends and the government’s crime fighting efforts during the budget debate.

But he never spoke, as the government aborted the debate early last Wednesday.

What the minister did say about crime on June 10 in response to Montagu MP Richard Lightbourn, who said the murder rate today is worse than it ever was, caused controversy.

Nottage, who rose on a point of order, said, “The murder rate today is no worse; in fact, less than it was in 2011, their last year in office.”

But police data showed that the murder count was 17 percent higher that it was in 2011.

The murder count when Nottage made the statement was 68.

Up to June 10, 2011, the murder count stood at 58.

Nottage did admit that the murder count is higher than it was in 2014.

He has not since made a public address about crime or the government’s efforts to reduce crime.

On June 4, Prime Minister Perry Christie pointed to some discord between the Royal Bahamas Police Force and Defence Force when he spoke about crime at the Caribbean-US High-Level Citizen Security Dialogue.

Six months ago, Christie said he has confidence in the police force and its efforts in combatting crime.

While Commissioner of Police Ellison Greenslade said earlier this month that serious crimes with the exception of murder are down, he admitted that the public does not want to hear that.

He said murders continue to challenge the police and called on all stakeholders, and the wider public to do more in the fight against crime.

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