This weekend was one of the bloodiest in the Bahamas this year. Seven people shot and three dead.
By my calculations, the death toll for the year in the Bahamas is 118 (last year was 119 murders). The murders are primarily in Nassau.
According to the Tribune, an 18-year-old out of jail on bail was killed on Saturday after attending the funeral of his brother who was murdered two weeks ago. He was leaving the funeral with his 14-year-old brother when they stopped at a traffic light. Two masked men jumped out of a vehicle and shot the two brothers multiple times before speeding off. The older brother died and the younger brother is in the hospital in critical condition.
The Tribune also reported on three separate weekend shooting incidents that placed four men in the hospital, as well as another shooting incident where a police officer killed a young man who reportedly tried to shoot him first.
The Bahamas Press also reports that the person who shot and killed police officer Sargent Dwayne Rolle last week outside a popular gambling spot turns out to be another police officer who was allegedly involved in gambling with police officer Rolle who he then killed when he left the gambling joint.
Meanwhile the commanding officer and chief superintendent of the Central District Police Station, Leamond Deleveaux, claims that he has beefed up the police presence in the tourist areas of Nassau. He told the the Guardian newspaper that "I’ve been putting a police officer on every corner for over six months, and over the last month we’ve gotten more officers."
He also claims that tourists in Nassau are virtually immune from crime. He states "to be honest with you, crime against tourists are almost non-existent despite what you hear or is printed in the media."
That’s a bold claim when the Bahamas is the subject to four critical crime warnings to U.S.citizens (one from the U.S. State Department and three from the U.S. Embassy) and one warning from Canada, all in less than one year. The last U.S. warning mentioned that U.S. tourists have been raped and robbed at gunpoint, and there have been three reported sexual assaults on U.S. citizens, including minors, by jet ski operators on Paradise Island.
Police chief Deleveaux needs to spend less time playing for the tourism board and more time fighting crime.
Photo Credit: Tribune Wikipedia / Ritchie Sieradzki Creative Commons 2.0.