Serious crimes dip, armed robberies spike

Although the Guyana Police Force (GPF) has reported a decrease in serious crimes for the year up to the end of October, armed robbery shot up by 15%.

This is according to statistics released by the force for the period from January 1 to October 31, when compared to figures for the previous year.

According to a police press release, there has been an overall 2% decrease in serious crime up to the end of October 31, compared with the corresponding period in 2011. The total number of reports of serious crimes made up to last month is 3,160 compared to 3,229 at the end of October 31, 2011. Some of the offences classified as “serious crime” are murder, armed robbery, robbery with violence, larceny from the persons, break and enter and larceny, burglary, rape and kidnapping.

A total of 113 murders were recorded at the end of October 2011 while 114 were recorded for the corresponding period this year. This reflects an increase of 1% in this type of crime, the release said. Of the 114 murders, 50 were of the disorderly type, seven were committed during armed robberies, 23 domestic-related and nine were execution-type, while the other 25 are still undetermined.

Police said armed robbery has increased by 15% as of the end of October, with 854 reports compared to 744 for the same period last year. The number of armed robberies involving the use of firearm was 515 compared to 468 for the period under review last year.  This represents an increase of 9%.

Police also recorded an increase in the number of armed robberies where instruments other than firearms were used, from 276 in October 2011 to 342 this year, representing an increase of 24%.

In relation to traffic, there has been a reduction by 8.1% in road fatalities up to the end of October. Ninety fatalities were recorded this year, compared to 98 last year. This year also saw reductions of other categories of traffic accidents, both serious and minor.

According to the release, pedestrians accounted for the majority of the victims, with 24 persons having lost their lives at the end of October. In addition, 17 pedal cyclists, 17 drivers and 12 motor cyclists died as at the end of October this year.

The GPF says speeding continues to be a major contributing factor to fatal accidents, causing 63 of the 83 fatal accidents for the period under review.

Traffic enforcement by police has resulted in a total of 56,809 cases being made at the end of October 31 this year; of this total, 12, 218 cases were for speeding. The police also noted that four road fatalities have already been recorded this month.

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