Eighth District Representative Marlon Penn has condemned the crime situation in the territory. Penn suggested that gun crime in the territory has become so bad that residents are likely to end up being unwittingly caught in the crossfire.
“It’s a very difficult time for all of us in this territory,” Penn commented on the Talking Points show recently. “I mean, this is the first time I really feel unsafe and even just to be social in the territory. You find persons, you go out with a friend just to have a social evening and you could be caught in the crossfire of flying bullets.”
Penn pointed out that there have been as many as seven murders in his community over the past year, with some murders happening at or near very popular social establishments.
He also disclosed that the situation hit very close to home for him, with one murder happening directly in front of a relative’s home that he visits frequently.
“One [murder happened] right in front of my grandparents’ home, where I go regularly every day. I go there at least two or three times a week and spend some time with my aunts and my cousins and so forth in that community. So, for me, it’s very disheartening and a very concerning situation.
Penn said he previously asked for all lawmakers to come together in the House of Assembly to discuss the crime issue and revealed that lawmakers had a conversation with the Police Commissioner over the issue.
But the Eighth District Representative said the issue needs to be part of an ongoing conversation and dialogue.
“Crime is not just a national security issue. It’s an issue for all of us as leaders of this country. So all of us need to be part of this discussion and this discourse and what the plan is moving forward to address the issue of crime,” Penn stated.
Penn’s comments and concerns come more than a year after police Commissioner Mark Collins came under severe criticism for suggesting in a leaked and since-aborted police recruitment video that the territory can quickly move from paradise to ‘muck and bullets’. Many persons called for the top cop’s resignation at the time and insisted that he apologise for his ill-timed comments.
Copyright 2023 BVI News, Media Expressions Limited. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.