CaribWorldNews, KINGSTON, Jamaica, Weds. July 8, 2009: Jamaica has seen a 10 percent drop in murder for the first six months of this year, the island`s Minister of National Security said Tuesday.
Senator Dwight Nelson said the island`s murder rate dropped for the period January 1 to July 3, 2009, over the corresponding period last year.
`We have had, up to now, 82 murders less than last year,` he stated as he addressed the Jamaica Employers` Federation Chief Executive Officer (CEO) breakfast held Tuesday at the Terra Nova Hotel.
Nelson also said that carnal abuse was down by 23 per cent, rape dropped 24 per cent, while there was a three per cent increase in shootings.
However, a total of 5,733 major incidents of crime were reported to the police during the period, which represents an increase of 964 or 20 per cent over the corresponding period last year.
`It is the property crimes, which continue to show dramatic and very frightening increases. Robberies are up by 18 per cent, break-ins are up by 79 per cent, and larceny is up by 127 per cent,` Senator Nelson said.
He blamed the increase in property crimes on the networking of criminal organisations in a number of communities. In terms of strategies to fight crime, Senator Nelson said focus will be placed on the implementation of a vehicle tracking system for all police cars; ensuring a competent and resourceful police force, with adequate training facilities provided; and the implementation of the National Identification System.
The minister also noted that the wider community has a role to play in fighting the scourge of crime in Jamaica.
He also urged the members of the private sector to get more involved in the fight against crime.