The following is a statement issued by Premier Dr D Orlando Smith following what appears to be two violent deaths in the British Virgin Islands on Friday, March 10.
I AM DEEPLY SADDENED to learn of the recent tragic deaths of two young men in this community: Mr Alston Penn and Mr Ashburn Dawson.
Mr Ashburn Dawson died after a shooting incident near the Sunday Morning Well last night, while the body of Alston Penn was found on Windy Hill Road early yesterday morning.
My condolences go out to the families of the victims.
I pray that God’s tender mercies surround all of you at this time.
As leader of this Territory, I reiterate that crime does not have a place in the Virgin Islands.
We must, therefore, have zero tolerance for it!
The Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF) has made an appeal to the public for information into these two deaths.
They have asked us to remain calm as officers of the Major Crime Team move swiftly through their investigations.
They have also asked us not to take matters into our own hands.
Let us not undermine their investigations, but rather assist by ‘saying something if we saw or know something’.
Additionally, the persons responsible can turn themselves into the police.
Persons can contact the Major Crime Team directly at 368-5682 or the RVIPF Intelligence Unit at 368-9339.
Persons can also report the information anonymously to Crimestoppers through its Miami-based hotline number 800-TIPS (8477).
My Government pledges its continued full support to the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force as we collectively work to maintain law and order.
The Virgin Islands is our home.
Now, more than ever, let us lend your support to the RVIPF. The police cannot do it alone.
It is very important that we all work together and not allow crime to escalate any further, where it can be a threat to us, to our visitors and our economy.
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