Friday 15 November, 2019

Cold case unit to be established in Royal St Lucia Police Force

A special unit within the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force will soon be formed to investigate cases that have grown cold over the years.

The police hierarchy today at a news conference promised not to turn a blind eye on such cases particularly homicides, robberies, burglaries, car thefts etc.

The pronouncement was made by Assistant Commissioner of Police responsible for operations, Wayne Charlery.

"We are committed on this aspect of things,” he said referring to the cold cases.

This special unit for cold cases will look at cases that have gone cold from 2000 to 2017, especially homicides. According to Charlery, the findings regarding these cold cases are very interesting.

“We will not turn a blind eye to those unsolved cases. We are coordinating to put a team of experienced investigators together. We have a preliminary document already,” Charlery said.

The Assistant Police Commissioner said that this special unit for cold cases is one of the newer strategies to be put in place by the police department. He said the perpetrators of such cases “are still out there committing those very same crimes or contributing to these very same crimes.”

Charlery concluded that the country recorded a total of 42 homicides for the year 2018, inclusive of one fatal police shooting.

“Additionally there was the occurrence of two suspicious deaths where one remains unclassified and the other a self-inflicted injury,” he said.

He noted that police were able to solve 22 out of the 42 homicides, with six being solved exceptionally and three being recommended to an inquest jury.

“Two of the suspects would have died in the course of the investigations and the one fatal police shooting is now with the Director of Public Prosecutions for a decision on the way forward,” Charlery said.

He said the total number of homicides detected for 2018 was 23 which translate to a homicide detection rate of 54.76 percent.

“A detection rate means a solved rate. The rule is when a suspect is arrested and subsequently charged the case would have been solved,” Charlery said, noting that there are exceptions to that rule.

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