The Bahamas just reached 128 murders for the year, a new record for the country. By way of comparison, in 2014, there were 328 murders in New York City with a population of 8,500,000 or roughly 3.85 per 100,000 population. The Bahamas is on the way to 150 murders in 2015, which with a population of 360,000 population, is about 42 per 100,000. Most of these crime occur in Nassau (New Providence).

But you would never know it listening to the Bahamian tourism officials.

The Bahamas Weekly has an interesting article today titled "Downtown Nassau Safe For Tourists, Nassau Bahamassays Top Cop." It quotes Chief Superintendent of the Tourism Policing Unit Leamond Deleveaux saying: “The downtown area is a very safe place. You can’t get it any safer.” Mr. Deleveaux also says: 

"We don’t have any reports about crimes against tourists."

“I know of no major incidents reported to the police. I am amazed that people say there are crimes against tourists in New Providence. This is myth and not factual.”

In truth, there have been many many assaults, robberies, thefts and muggings of U.S. tourists and residents written about by the newspapers in Nassau. 

The U.S. State Department has currently placed the Bahamas under a critical crime warning and cites armed robbery as a major criminal threat facing U.S. citizens in The Bahamas. "The U.S. Embassy has received multiple reports of tourists robbed at gunpoint or knifepoint in tourist locations in the downtown areas of Nassau, to include the cruise ship docks and the Cable Beach commerce areas; several of these incidents occurred during daylight hours. Burglaries, larcenies and “snatch-and-grab” crimes happen in Nassau and U.S. citizens have been victims of these crimes. The U.S. Embassy has received reports of assaults, including sexual assaults, in diverse areas such as in casinos, outside hotels, or on cruise ships." 

Earlier this year, we pointed out that Nassau has been the focus of 7 crime warnings by the U.S. and Canada dating back to January 2014 with several sexual assaults on U.S. citizens, including minors, reportedly committed by jet ski operators on Paradise Island.

Mr. Deleveaux needs to be reminded of the murder of American sailor Kyle Bruner in Nassau. His murderers, who shot him just feet away from the Paradise Island Bridge in Nassau, were convicted last week.   

I last wrote about chief superintendent Deleveaux last December in my article Bloody Nassau about a particularly dangerous weekend when seven Bahamians were shot and three were killed. He claimed that tourists in Nassau are virtually immune from crime. He told the Guardian newspaper in Nassau "to be honest with you, crime against tourists are almost non-existent despite what you hear or is printed in the media."

Photo Credit: TampAGS, for AGS Media Creative Commons Wikipedia

  • Lenny Neely

    First of all no one in Bahamaland takes the commissioner of police seriously, he’s a big fat joke. He is a corrupted man with no heart, appointed by Perry Christie the leader of the most corrupt branch of government in the World; the Bahamian PLP. Self interest in Baha Mar is their first priority right now, they have too much invested to pay attention to people getting murdered in our country. And if your a visitor or tourist you won’t even count, look at the guy found dead and nude in Abaco, Mason I think was his name. The Bahamian police never solved that tourist’s case, and also never counted him as a homicide, so what is he than, invisible? Our country has become a cesspool of corruption, from top to bottom no one can be trusted. So if you come to Bahamaland, you are on your own, it’s your life or mine, welcome to the Nassau jungle, kill or be killed.

  • Boston Law school student

    My professor informed me today that he read an article in a business magazine that a cruise line company is in talks with Cuba for a contract. He said the article mentioned that the ship would stop at a numerous amounts of different ports all long it’s outer coast; sounds exciting. I myself read three months ago that Carnival was in talks with Cuba on a registration first port of call contract for the future. It is evident that if Cuba does fully open to the U.S. that cruise ship companies will change it’s first port of call because of safety issues and price. If this does occur, maybe I should look into cruise line company stocks, a change like that might make their stocks go through the roof…lol It is every exciting to see what Cuba’s opening will do to the stock market, I predict stocks are going to go nuts, we’ll have to wait and see; great website Attorney James Walker.

  • Lance

    My wife and I took a cruise a year ago and Nassau was the first stop, why, I have no idea; the place is a third world ghetto. We got off the ship but returned immediately when we saw all the police and security guards. They were everywhere, I have never seen so many cops in my life. The crime must be overwhelming to have so many police officers, what an unease feeling we had as we shopped. And I tell you honesty, the locals don’t ease the stress by not being friendly either. We said hello, and they would reply, what do you want, what the hell is that about. I don’t think we’ll ever take a cruise again, our first and our last, we’re going back to flying.

  • Alfred Bazeley

    I’m very sorry to say the Bahamas, and especially Nassau, is in meltdown. Many professional Bahamians are aching to get out because the political and legal systems are broken.
    The governing PLP is a corrupt, incompetent organisation whose talisman remains the late Sir Lynden Pindling, a prime minister up to his neck in drug money who victimised political enemies in a ruthless attempt to retain power.
    Today’s crime rate is a direct by-product of the Pindling legacy. Before he rose to power in 1967, the Bahamas was the loveliest, safest island resort in the Americas, and possibly the world. Now it is downright dangerous, with a murder rate not far off that of an officially designated war zone.
    I spent a long time in Nassau over the years, but I would not go back there now. The wild men – progeny of the Pindling era – have taken over, and the hopeless police force hasn’t a clue how to cope.
    It’s a real shame, but there you have it.

  • Dana
  • Alfred Bazeley

    Since my last post two days ago, there have been two more murders in Nassau – one victim being a young schoolteacher who was shot dead while sitting in her car at a traffic light.
    This much-loved mother of two was not even in the ghetto, she was in a ‘respectable’ part of town close to the private school where she worked. Robbery is thought to have been the motive.
    Those who claim it’s just the druggies and wasters who are being bumped off are sadly mistaken and misguided. Everyone in Nassau is a potential target.
    This once blessed and beautiful nation is in its death throes because of its greedy, amoral politicians, who have set such a poor example over the last 40 years or so.
    No-one knows where the Bahamas goes from here. The country is in uncharted territory.

  • Greg Rahmin

    I used to visit the Bahamas with my father when I was a child. But as an adult I visited it last year and didn’t recognize one thing about it, it is not the same place I remember. The British were running it than, now it has become a place of misery, racism, jealousy, litter, and despair. How is it that after so many years of wishing for their Independence and finally receiving it to turn this beautiful country to the poor state it’s now in; what a bloody shame.

  • Alfred Bazeley

    Four more murders in four days! That’s the tally in the Bahamas since I posted my last message. As I write, the murder toll for 2015 is 134 in a nation of 300,000 people. That places the Bahamas, and especially Nassau, right up there with the most murderous societies on earth.
    You’d have to live in a war zone, or fall victim to a terrorist attack like the one in Paris, to record such horrendous murder statistics. The Bahamas is now a killing field, with lawless gangs taking lives as and when they please.
    The PLP, having boasted before the 2012 election that it had the solution to crime, has once again been found wanting. This corrupt and shameless organisation has brought the Bahamas to its knees since it first gained power in 1967.

    It will need a miracle to restore the Bahamas to its former self. I’m afraid it will never happen. There is no hope. I pity the many fine Bahamians trapped in what has become a dysfunctional society.

  • Mrs. Stouff

    Trust me, this place isn’t safe at all anymore. My husband and I have been going to the Atlantis hotel for the pass 10 years with our kids; they love the place. But for the life of me to this day can not comprehend why the tour buses and taxies have to drive through that disgusting ghetto? I hope the Atlantis hotel reads this comment, because you have just lost a 10 year costumer. Every time the driver has to stop anywhere on their way to the hotel we all are so STRESSED OUT! Christ O Mighty, this last time we couldn’t get a day flight so had to play in at night(Which I hate!) and the drive to the hotel was scary, we even heard gun fire in the distance. Right there in the cab, we decided never to return; sad, we were planning to go there until our kids became teenagers with other interest. The place needs to do something fast about the crimes, beautiful beaches, but how can they be enjoyed with all the STRESS.

  • Thomas Rolle

    Mrs. Stouff, I’m Bahamian living in Connecticut and I won’t even visit there anymore. I was one of the lucky ones who moved to the States when I was young with my parents and educated at some of the best schools in Greenwich,CT. It is truly sad what’s become of my homeland, I have some family still there, but I won’t go there, I pay for them to come visit me. It’s mostly cousins and aunts that are still left there, it is so sad every time their visit has ended, crying all the way to the airport; they don’t want to go back to the Bahamas, can’t blame them.

  • E.Carr

    The only thing safe in the Bahamas is an object shaped like a box that is made of steel with filled concrete and has a numbered dial for security that is found in a bank. It’s also called a strong box, but the world knows it has a SAFE; that is the only thing safe in the Bahamas.

  • Edward Valledon

    My memories of Nassau go back sixty years. As a young man, I loved it because it was so carefree. In those days it was a British colony and, while not perfect (where is?) there was a very strong sense of right and wrong. People had respect for one another and the over-the-hill (ghetto) area was as safe to walk through, whatever the hour, as anyone could imagine.
    Though a white foreigner, I never felt any hostility in places like Minnie Street, Carmichael Road or Toote Shop Corner. I used to visit nightclubs like Charley Charley, the Cat and Fiddle and the Banana Boat, run by a singer called Richard Delamore. I recall going to hear a fine Haitian singer called Andre Toussaint, and a bongo drummer called Peanuts Taylor. It was a fun place in those days.
    Today I feel sad at how things have declined since independence. The drug era of the 1970s and 1980s started the decline and it’s been gathering pace ever since. Now there is no respect for the law and life is cheap. There is no longer any respect for anyone. The place is a free-for-all, a lawless wasteland where criminals run amok.
    I agree with Mr Bazeley. The Pindling government was to blame. Corruption always eventually leads to social disarray, and that’s what Nassau is suffering now.
    Those so-called ‘elder statesmen’ of the Bahamas who were the PLP ‘rebels’ of yesteryear need to look to their consciences because they were the ones who led the Bahamas towards its current parlous state.
    They betrayed the Bahamian people because of their greed and dishonesty. Now it’s payback time.

  • Saint Thomas used to be Paradise now its a drug traffickers truck stop. Beautiful Island with incredibly clear beaches. Its now the Detroit of the Carrebean.

  • Alfred Bazeley

    For the record, the Bahamas murder rate is now 136 for the year, a man having been beaten to death with a length of pipe. That’s two more since I last posted, and no doubt there’ll be another before I finish typing this message. Chicago in the 1920s had nothing on Nassau. Sad, sad days…

  • Alfred Bazeley

    I was right (almost). As i was writing my last message, a male law student was being stabbed four times by a gang who also vandalised his car. The incident took place at a College of the Bahamas function. The same evening a man was shot in his car. Both victims have survived, but the mayhem goes on…

  • Tracey

    I read an underage teenager has been missing for a month now in Nassau, a resent graduate from HS. It almost seems the drug gangs are jealous of education, they must know it’s the only way to win against them and their life style. But with hero’s to them like Christie and Pindling, their outlook on life is a little different than ours. Why work hard for something in life if you can steal it, or sell an illegal product that destroys so many families as they get rich quick. They are losers in every why, in the eyes of humanity, and in the eyes of the Creator.

  • Ugo D.

    Why would anyone with common sense go to the Bahamas when you have safer places to visit like Cayman Islands, Bonaire, or Cayo, Cuba? We visited Nassau 6 years ago and it was already bad, I thought the Atlantis Hotel would be the only safe place to be, and that week we were there, the casino was robbed….LOL!

  • Ugo D.

    Amazing how people just don’t listen to warnings, sand and beaches are more important than their own family’s safety.

    The Bahamas can’t guarantee you safety, but you can count on it 100% in giving you death, rape and murder; there is a 99% chance this poor woman is already dead. Thank you Mr. James Walker for the time you put into this website that saves so many we will never know.

  • Mysonlivesin nassau

    Nassau is like Guyana when they had the big crime wave a few years back but in Guyana the government killed off the bad guys no jail for them ,in Nassau all murderers get bail after 18 months some of those guys out on bail for two murders then get picked up again for another one . Sad but true.

  • paul

    At the PCA pokerstar’s Caribbean adventure, which is a huge two week tournament that has occurred each January for about a decade, winning players are shaken down for cash by immigration authorities who take advantage of the player’s casual declaration of their winnings (mostly trying to avoid paperwork). After hearing many horror stories I decided not to attend this even though I had been saving money for it for a couple of years. I hope they move the event to Cuba.

  • Christina

    Hello. My brother was Kyle Bruner. I have been back and forth to Nassau since my brother was shot and killed on Mother’s Day 3 years ago in Nassau. I just came back two weeks ago and going back in less than 2 weeks. I have cruised to Nassau each time because it’s cheaper for me. I have been coming to Nassau for years and never had a problem besides the usual harassing to purchase things. Sentencing was postponed for my brothers’ murderers because the prosecutors dad passed away the night before. I will be coming back to Nassau on February 24th.
    If you go to Nassau or any third world country for that matter, ALWAYS be aware of your surroundings. Do not carry a purse. Do not wear jewelry. This kind of thing can happen in our own backyard as well. There are good and bad wherever u go. It is up to you to stay aware and never be naive. Be safe fellow cruise travelers.
    In memory of Kyle Bruner is on FB if you would like to visit and pay respects. Thank you.