Community policing to tackle violent crimes in Western Division
Serious crimes are down by 17 percent in the Western Division, however, violent crimes still pose a challenge to lawmen in the Division’s five districts.
Speaking at the weekly Police media briefing at the Police Administration Building in Port of Spain, Acting Superintendent Joey Samaroo said he is pleased with the progress made in the reduction of serious crimes, however, there was work to be done to ensure that violent crime numbers were also brought down.
“From the first of January this year to the present time, the Division has realised a decrease of 17 percent in serious crimes committed. From 655 in 2016 to 542 for the corresponding period in 2017.
Whilst we are pleased with the decrease in serious crimes already achieved so far for 2017, several new initiatives have been implemented to achieve an even greater reduction in serious crimes.”
Samaroo spoke of the new measures in place to ensure success in the area of reduction of violent crimes, and the successes the Division has enjoyed thus far.
“The Western Division has intensified its anti-crime operations by targeting a number of priority offenders, gang activities, known drug blocks, and also we have an increase in DUI exercises.
At this time in 2016, the Division seized and found 75 illegal firearms and for this year 2017, we have already seized 97 firearms which represented a 29 percent increase.”
The Acting Superintendent said the Division’s renewed efforts include community policing in its patrolling strategies and intelligence gathering mechanisms.
Town meetings are also held on a monthly basis to keep stakeholders up-to-date and provide them with the opportunity to assist with the policing of the entire Division.
Samaroo said the Division’s community policing section has been very active in various primary and secondary schools throughout the Division as well as at the St Michael’s School for Boys.
There are a total of five active police youth clubs within the Western Division: St James, Carenage, Bagatelle, Patna and Maraval, Police Youth Clubs.
The Division borders both Port of Spain and the North Eastern Divisions and includes the St James, Four Roads, West End, Maraval and Carenage Police Stations.