Statistics at the end of August have shown that crime has dropped by nine percent, and local police are catching just fewer than half of every 100 persons that commit an offence.
Police Commissioner Michael Matthews said those were the statistics cited in a Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF) report recently handed to the governor.
He said the territory’s crime rate has actually been decreasing over the last five years. Recorded crime has decreased by 23 percent since 2013.
“What does that equate to? It’s over 350 less offences … Of course, we don’t have thousands and thousands of offences each year — at the end of 2017, we actually recorded just over 1,200 crimes for the territory. The point is that, over the last five years, the trajectory of crime has been going down across a lot of categories including some of the ones that cause the most concern like robberies and violence.”
45 in every 100 offenders get caught
The top cop further reported statistics showing that the RVIPF’s ability to detect crime has improved.
“What I mean by that is our ability to catch and deal with criminals is increasing. So, at the end of August, we had achieved a target of catching 45 percent of people who were committing crimes in the territory.”
“For every 100 crimes that were committed in the territory, we were catching people in 45 cases and dealing with them through the criminal justice system. Some might say: ‘well, Commissioner, shouldn’t it be sort of 100 percent? Shouldn’t be 80 percent?’ Of course, we’ll work on that but … the average around the world is considerably lower.”
All things considered, local police “don’t do too badly in terms of the number of offenders that they catch”, the commissioner said.