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December 14, 2013
Star News


St James cops to boost numbers for Christmas

Deputy Superintendent Egbert Parkins.

The St James police will be increasing their presence on the streets to ensure the safety of citizens as they go about their various activities during the busy Christmas season.

Senior Superintendent of Police in charge of St James, Egbert Parkins, said 35 additional personnel would be deployed starting next week and they would provide 24-hour coverage from Fairview to Gloucester Avenue until the New Year.

"We want to ensure that people are able to go about their business. All of these persons would be operating out of the Barnett Street Police Station, making it easier for us to deploy," Parkins said.

He was addressing a pre-Christmas public forum at the Montego Bay Chamber of Commerce and Industry on December 11 at the Montego Bay Civic Centre.

Parkins said that measures would also be put in place to deal with traffic congestion during the season as well as to suppress gang activity.

Speaking against the background of a recent spate of murders in the parish, he said intelligence indicates that they were as a result of gang violence.

"Of the total figure for 2011, some 124 persons lost their lives at the hands of gang activities. In 2012, there were 116, and to date, 118 persons have lost their lives as a result of gang activities," he stated.

He called on citizens of the parish to come forward with any information related to gang activity and crime generally, noting that the efforts of the police to make communities safe could only succeed with the support of the citizenry.

"It is clear that gangs are destroying our communities, and we must not support them. The message is, therefore, clear. the time has come! That is why we are asking for your full support as we move forward. Without the community support, we can't succeed. It's a team effort and we must all be on board," Parkins stated.

He said that the police would be relentless in gathering credible evidence to enable the conviction of criminals.

"Let those who are involved in crimes such as murders, shootings, and robberies, and those who are supporting them, understand that the field has been ploughed. They now have three options: either they are going to stop, or run away from St James, or they are going to face the music," Parkins warned.

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