By Dana Malcolm
#TurksandCaicos, January 24, 2023 – The firearm crises in the Turks and Caicos Islands has reared its head once more with reports three gun related incidents, all robberies, occurring in the Turks and Caicos over the weekend. Concentrated in Providenciales, the incidents left one man nursing a gunshot wound.
Police say the first incident happened at 10:08 pm on Friday January 20th, they received reports that a man had been attacked by two masked men in School Hill, Five Cays. The criminals pulled up alongside the victim in a silver Toyota, hopped out and proceeded to rob and then shoot him in the leg. He was rushed to the Cheshire Hall Medical Centre (CHMC) where he received medical attention.
On Saturday night around 8 p.m. another man was robbed of around $1,800. The male victim told officers he left a marina in Leeward and proceeded to a gaming location where he won a sum of cash. When he collected the money, three men came up to him, one of them with a weapon and took the cash.
The robbers drove off in a black Honda Accord.
Around 8:50 p.m. Sunday, a group of visitors occupying a villa at a Resort in Grace Bay were robbed, once again the finger was pointed at three masked armed men. A large sum of cash and electronic items were stolen from the guests.
The crime spree is eerily similar to how the 2022 year began, with a spate of robberies and home invasions that landed the TCI a travel warning from the US.
Bwa Kalé movement striking back against gangs, nearly 3,000 murdered
#Haiti, September 29, 2023 – In eight months, nearly 3,000 Haitian people have been slaughtered in their home country due to the upsurge and uprising of gangs in the republic which is struggling to hold its democracy in check.
‘Bwa Kalé’, it’s a vigilante movement that has sprung up in Haiti, and the UN says it is driving up murders.
A recent report following an expert visit detailed it.
“Certain groups have formed allegedly to protect their neighbourhoods from gangs. In some instances, these groups have summarily executed people suspected of being gang members. The Bwa Kalé movement demonstrates the population’s lack of trust in the State, especially in the police and the courts. The expert has learned that some members of the police and the judiciary have been complicit with gangs.”
Despite the obvious fear among residents, the UN is warning them not to take justice into their own hands. However, that is easier said than done as Haitians have demonstrated their feelings of abandonment by fleeing the island in mass numbers on illegal voyages and standing up to the gangs themselves.
In the same report, one said: “The State is absent, there are no police or other officials operating there.”
According to AP, a new report to the U.N. Security Council indicated that 2,728 intentional killings were recorded between October 2022 and June 2023, including 247 women, 58 boys, and 20 girls. Bwa Kalé is blamed partially for the increase, as life in the country is described as unbearable.
United States Tourist Guilty says TCI Police in Conviction Report
#TurksandCaicos, September 19, 2023 – A 26-year-old male has been sentenced to eight months’ imprisonment having pleaded guilty to Possession of Ammunition.
Michael Allan Grim Jr. of Paoli Pike Floyds, Indiana was today (September 18th) sentenced. Mr. Grim was arrested on August 01st, 2023, and subsequently charged, after one black magazine, containing 20 rounds of 9mm ammunition was found in his luggage, whilst at the Providenciales International Airport.
During the investigation, Mr. Grim was interviewed by detectives of the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force and admitted the ammunition belonged to him.
Head of Crime, Safeguarding, and Public Protection Superintendent Dean Holden in a brief statement said: “The laws of the Turks and Caicos Islands regarding the possession of firearms and ammunition is very clear. The laws are clearly defined as to the requirements needed in obtaining permission for possession of firearms and ammunition when traveling to the TCI. The laws apply to everyone and will be enforced.”
Officers of the Serious Crime Unit of the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force investigated the matter.
Murder No. 14 in Kew Town; No Identity, No Leads Police ask for HELP
#TurksandCaicos, September 11, 2023 – The Kew Town Community was the scene of the country’s latest recorded murder according to the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police which rushed to the community on Saturday September 2nd after yet another shooting.
It was the country’s 14th confirmed homicide and came one week after a married couple was showered with bullets resulting in the death of the husband, Jevanio Williams.
In an update on the killing, police in a brief communication said the victim was shot multiple times.
Calls were placed to the Police Control Room and a team of detectives arrived at the given location in Walter Cox Drive, where they saw a male with what appeared to be gunshot wounds about the body lying motionless on the ground.”
The male victim, who has yet to be formally identified, was pronounced deceased at the scene by medical officials.
Detectives continued investigations over the weekend, to establish the events surrounding the murder. The victim is said to have been shot in the head; assassination style.
Police, in revealing some details of the attack also launched an appeal for information in the crime.
“We are seeking the assistance of the public in identifying the deceased male victim who was dressed in a red t-shirt, dark short pants, and dark trainers.
The victim is approximately 35-40 years old, of medium build, and is believed to be of Haitian descent.
The public is being asked to contact 911, the closest police station, or call TCI Crime Stoppers at 1-800-8477 and give any information on this murder or any other illegal activity anonymously.”
During last year, the RTCIPF has been working on information gathering to classify which murders are related to gang activity. Sadly, this is another murder where there is no information regarding a motive or the identity of the victim, making categorization of the event near impossible.
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