By Staff Writer
The Stabroek Market area has emerged in the top spot for areas recording the most serious crimes between January 1 and November 13, 2023, in Regional Division Four ‘A’.
This division encompasses the nation’s capital, Georgetown – spanning from Agricola on the eastern bank of the Demerara River to Cummings Lodge on the coast. It has a population of over 120,000 and has six police stations and 10 outposts to support the Guyana Police Force (GPF)’s operations.
Nestled in Georgetown is the iconic Stabroek Market, a central point for both commercial and transportation activities within and outside of the division. But even with an outpost a stone-throw away from the Stabroek Market and the Brickdam Police Station nearby, the area has topped the chart for places where most serious crimes have occurred for the year thus far.
According to the Divisional Commander, Assistant Commissioner Simon McBean, the area accounts for 34.26% of all serious crimes committed between January 1 and November 13, 2023, within the division. Trailing closely behind is the Plum Park/ A-C Fields, Sophia with 32.24%, followed by Main Street (between Church and New Market Streets) with 6.5%. The Kingston/Eve Leary area, which houses the Police Headquarters, has also recorded 6.5% of all serious crimes in the city.
Commander McBean also noted that a total of 15 murders were committed during January 1 and November 13, 2023, in Regional Division 4 ‘A’, compared to 19 during the corresponding period last year when 19 were reported. This translates to a 22% decline with a clear-up rate of 64.3%.
He said that the division is also witnessing a reduction in Robbery Under Arms (RUA) (Firearms) committed, with 72 reported compared to 136 last year. This represents a 45% decline.
While the entire division witnesses a significant decline in Robbery with Violence (42.8%) and Burglary (55.5%), Rape is on the increase with 11 recorded during the period compared to 4 last year. This, according to the stats, represents a 175% increase. No case of kidnapping was recorded during both 2022 and 2023 periods.
Commander McBean noted that firearms have accounted for 91.6% of all weapons used in serious crimes within the entire division, with knives coming in at 29.19%. Below is a further breakdown of weapons used during serious crimes:
The Commander’s presentation shows that cellphones are the most stolen articles during serious crimes, followed by cash, jewelry and motorcycles. Below is a further breakdown of the stats for Division 4 ‘A’, provided by Commander McBean:
Firearms found between January 1 and November 13, 2023
A total of 23 pistols were found during the reporting period, compared to 15 during the same time last year within the division. Below is a further breakdown of the weapons found for the year thus far:
A total of 9822.69 kilograms (21,655lbs) of cannabis were seized during this period, compared to the 2,813.02 (6,201lbs) confiscated during the same period last year. Also, some 23 persons were charged in relation to cannabis trafficking this year, compared to 29 last year.
Some 250.57 grams of cocaine were found during the January 1 to November 2023 period, resulting in seven charges. In 2022, 56.5 grams were found, leading to four charges.
The Commander noted that the force will increase foot, bicycle, canine, drone and vehicular patrols to create a safe environment for all businesses, shoppers and visitors within the region throughout the Christmas season. He noted that his officers will be working in closer collaboration with the City Constabulary, security agencies, the business community and other stakeholders to reduce crime, traffic accidents and congestion.
He added that the region will be divided into 15 sectors, with each to be headed by an Officer/Inspector along with “adequate” ranks. He noted that special arrangements will be implemented to facilitate late shopping on Christmas Eve and Old Years Day.
The Commander is urging citizens to be alert and aware of surroundings at all times; carry only what is needed, conceal valuable items, avoid wearing expensive jewelry that may draw attention, and consider alternative payment methods to avoid moving around with lots of cash. Businessowners are urged to install security cameras, not to keep more cash than necessary on premises, and avoid being predictable with bank visits.