Head of the St. James Police Division, Superintendent Vernon Ellis, says major crimes, with the exception of murders, are down in the parish.
Superintendent Ellis was addressing the monthly meeting of the St. James Municipal Corporation, held in Montego Bay on Thursday (June 10).
“We are seeing an increase in murders, but in every other category of major crimes in St. James, we are seeing a significant reduction,” he highlighted.
The Superintendent also indicated that the division is looking at long-term plans to fight crime in the parish, and he is “very optimistic that the trajectory in terms of the increase will fall back in a short while”.
He noted that areas in the parish experiencing an upsurge in crime, particularly the Montego Hills area, are being addressed by way of increased police presence.
“Additional assets have been deployed to cauterise the situation in Montego Hills. The police teams [deployed] have seized several firearms and bulletproof vests inside the [community],” Superintendent Ellis said.
He added that the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) has partnered with the Peace Management Initiative (PMI) and other intervention organisations in the parish, to use multiple approaches to ensure that persons being affected by crime and violence are receiving the necessary support.
Superintendent Ellis said the JCF continues to enforce the Disaster Risk Management Act in the parish, and is taking a zero-tolerance approach to breaches of the Act that are likely to cause the spread of COVID-19.