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Superintendent of Police, Derrick Knight has urged the Clarendon Lay Magistrates Association and by extension, the communities of that parish to determinedly join the police in the fight against crime. Speaking at a special meeting of the Association on Thursday (July 27) at the St. Gabriel’s Anglican Church Hall in May Pen, Superintendent Knight said, that with an eight per cent increase in the murder rate in that parish, the Jamaica Constabulary Force had decided to incorporate Clarendon in the Hot Spot Secretariat initiative.
However, he said the police alone could not address the problem. “The police alone cannot do it and for us to be proactive and reactive, the information must be flowing.we want to ask other organizations including the Lay Magistrates Association to come on board and any form of social intervention that you can offer would be useful,” he said.
“As a parish, we need to take control. It doesn’t make sense you say you’re living in Crofts Hill or Frankfield and it doesn’t concern you.it reflects on your parish and once the brand is a negative brand, it does not spell good for the person living in the parish. So we’re asking you please to come on board,” he implored.
Superintendent Knight noted that the seven communities considered to be ‘hot spots’ included Palmers Cross, May Pen Town Centre, Effortville, Sevens, Sevens Heights, Jack Monday (Denbigh Crescent), and Western Park.
He said the Force was utilizing several strategies to combat crime, and the ‘hot spot’ strategy in particular helped to inform deployment of resources, operations, investigations and social intervention.
“We use the hot spot strategy in the crime prone areas, where every day we sit down as a team and look at the crime in these areas and see how best we can deal with it. We have increased our presence in all the hot spot areas. We are now having widely publicized meetings with the citizens, we listen to their concerns and tell them some of the strategies we have in place and how they can help us and what we can do to help them,” he explained.
Superintendent Knight also mentioned that the Clarendon command was receiving help from the Area Three Headquarters and the Mobile Reserve. He further said that the police was examining its investigations and targeting multiple perpetrators of crimes in the parish.
In addition Superintendent Knight said persons who came in from other parishes to commit crimes were being watched as the police were giving attention to parish borders and highways.
“We are also looking at social intervention to see what the police can do to reach out to the communities.one such activity is the hosting of a summer camp to start on August 8 for children from economically challenged communities. We also want to target females and to educate them on some of the risks that they take when they carry out certain kinds of behaviours,” he noted.