General — 20 September 2013 — by Kareem Clarke
Crime on downward spiral up to August

Major crime down by 43%, but carnal knowledge up 51%

The Belize Police Department has issued a press release indicating the crime statistics for the month of August 2013. According to the statistics, there has been an overall reduction of 11% in major crimes across the country. There were only 3 murders recorded countrywide for August 2013, compared to 9 murders which were committed last year in the month of August – a difference of 33%.

From January to August of 2013, there were a total of 70 murders, compared to a total of 97 for the same period of 2012. This so far amounts to a 27.8% reduction in murders, while shooting incidents are also down by 29.4%. The biggest decrease in major crimes, however, is the 43% decline in the number of recorded robberies.

While rape is down by 30%, there has been a considerable, and disturbing, increase in the number of reported incidents of carnal knowledge. That particular crime is steadily on the rise – up by a whopping 51%. Theft also continues to spike; it has gone up by 7%.

In related news, the Minister of National Security presented the monthly awards to the zone and formation that were most effective in reducing major crimes for the month of August. The Western Zone, headed by Senior Superintendent of Police Aaron Guzman was selected as the zone with the best performance in reducing major crimes during the last month.

The Western Zone is comprised of an area that encompasses the Cayo District. The formation that performed best in reducing major crimes in August was the Benque Viejo Sub-formation, which is led by Assistant Superintendent of Police Dinsdale Thompson.

A certificate of recognition was handed to Thompson. and the Minister presented a cheque of $1,000 to Guzman as a reward for their performances in their sub-formation and zone, respectively.

The awards were presented at the start of the Minister of National Security’s monthly meeting with the zone, formation and branch commanders at the National Police Training Academy in Belmopan. Commissioner of Police Allen Whylie chaired the meeting, and also provided the summary of the most recent crime statistics.

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