Almost 70 per cent of murders in St James cleared up
Livern Barrett, Senior Gleaner Writer
Nearly 70 per cent of the murders reported in St James so far this year have been cleared up.
This was disclosed this morning by Leader of Government Business in the Senate, Kamina Johnson Smith.
A case is considered cleared up when an arrest is made.
Johnson Smith said overall the clear-up rate for all serious crimes in St James is now at 62 per cent, up from 39 per cent last year.
Johnson Smith was speaking in the Senate during the debate on the proposed extensions of the state of public emergency in St James and the zone of special operations in the community of Mount Salem, also in the parish.
Johnson Smith, who is also Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, said the 69 per cent clear-up rate for reported murders in St James this year represents an increase of more than 100 per cent when compared with the corresponding period last year.
According to her, the St James Police cleared 31 per cent or 71 of the 224 reported cases of murder last year.
"In 2018, as at October 12, that rate has climbed to almost 70 per cent. This can only be described as an unmitigated success," Johnson Smith said.
"Not only is the murder rate down significantly in St James, but the clearance rate for reported murders and shootings has doubled and the significance of this should not be understated," she added.
Johnson Smith said the residents of St James are now experiencing an improved quality of life.
"The fear factor has now been removed. Public order is returning. In addition, the tourism sector is flourishing, " she said.