Police renew appeal for guns

| 20/05/2010

(CNS): Following an armed robbery in George Town last night the Police have renewed their appeal to the community to bring in firearms and ammunition under the RCIPS gun amnesty. Detective Superintendent Marlon Bodden, the officer co-ordinating the amnesty said that so far seven firearms and 70 rounds of ammunition have been dropped off in the first ten days of the initiative but he appealed to anyone who had possession of an unlicensed firearm for whatever reason to take it to a police station. (Photo by Dennie Warren Jr)

During last nights armed robbery of the Food 4 Less store the gunman used a flare gun which exploded in the shop. “Luckily no innocent bystander was injured as a result of the robbery last night, but there is the possibility the suspect may have been wounded,” Bodden said. “Flare guns are commonplace on the island, after all the weapon is an essential part of boat safety kits. It’s when they fall into the wrong hands that they cause problems – like the incident we saw last night.’
Bodden said the no question’s asked amnesty was an opportunity for flare guns which are not being used on boats are any other weapon that is not licensed to be taken off the streets.
However, the senior officer said while no questions would be asked by those delivering the guns to the police weapons would be examined for any connection to crime.
“I will say again that this is not a blanket amnesty and that any weapons handed in will be tested to ascertain if they have been involved in a crime. It is an amnesty which covers possession and disposal – that does not mean immunity from prosecution from being involved in violent crime,” he added.
Aside from the seven guns and ammunition a number of detonators and a bow with arrows had also been brought in. “We are still only ten days into the month long amnesty, but already we are seeing significant numbers of guns handed in. The public are supporting the amnesty and we are sure that they will continue to do so. Events like last night only make us even more determined to do all we can to crack down on firearms crime and work with our partners and our communities to make Cayman safer for everyone,” Bodden stated.
Police said that Food 4 Less in McClendon Drive, George Town was robbed at about 9.10 pm last night, Wednesday 19 May 2010 by a man, dressed in black and wearing a black mask. The suspect threatened staff, before aiming the gun at a display cabinet within the store. He fired off a shot, causing the flare gun to explode. He then grabbed a cash drawer and ran off from the scene.No-one within the store was injured, but the display cabinet was damaged.
The robbery suspect is described as being of slim build; about five foot two inches in height, wearing a black hooded long sleeve jacket, black pants, black shoes, and a black mask.
Anyone with information about the robbery last night should contact George Town CID on 949-4222. Information can also be passed to the RCIPS confidential tip line 949-7777 or Crime Stoppers 800-8477 (TIPS).
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Category: Headline News

About the Author ()

Comments (12)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. songbird says:

    Look at the "Problems" with the RCIPS The hypocrisy of this hold criminal and Gun amnesty situation in Cayman. Only if people knew the real truth about some of these persons. Becareful Mr. Baines careful sir! You or the former Commissioner don’t have enough individuals around to share certain old truths and facts because the same persons saw to that.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I suggested an amnesty a few months ago and am pleased to see the police are making some sensible moves. However, in the same post I also urged the law to be changed so that anyone caught with a firearm after the amnesty would win a 25 year stay in a nice new sh*thole wing of Northward Prison without a/c, tv, and all the other perks they seem to have up there.

  3. Anon says:

    Marlon, Marlon…don’t you get it? they won’t give them up because they need them!!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Other countries have experienced success with similar programmes by offering monetary compensation for fire arms dropped off. I know the gov’t is broke, but it might be worth their while.

    • Blighty Bill says:

      No they haven’t.  They have just ended up paying for old and useless firearms.  Gun amnesties don’t have any crime prevention benefits.  Freakonomics has a nice section setting out the studies to support how pointless they are.  In any country like Cayman where possesion of a useful firearm has added premium to a criminal because of the problems of access to a replacement (contrast with America) the usefulness of amnesties is even less likely.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Did we not bring in 15 special UK cops or something like that recently to deal specifically with "gun crime"? Are they on the job yet or relaxing up rum point again?

  6. Real World says:

    The RCIPS can argue it’s seven less firearms on the streets, but seven guns and a few bullets is hardly a "significant number . . ." as Superintent Bodden s has said.  Why doesn’t he say what he obviously really feels: that’s he’s dissappointed that only seven guns have been handed in so far, and it looks as though the initiative is going to be all but ignored. I’d have more respect for him if he didn’t try to try to spin the success of the initiative.  

    It’s worrying that after 2-months of no reports of a violent crime in Cayman (the last was the murder of Alrick Peddie reported by Cayman News Service on 25.3.10; and credit where credit’s due: congratultaions to the RCIPS for this brief period of peace) we have again seen  a series of violent crimes involving firearms and other weapons over the last couple of weeks.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I understand the objectives of the amnesty.  However, if a perpetrator knows that a gun they turn in would possibly lead to their own arrest, what is the motivation to turn it in.

    Thispolicy is sophomoric

    • Pending says:

      Here are a few more ideas for thought concerning this "gun amnesty" and its failure thus far:

      1. Perhaps if the drop off for these "illegal" weapons was not in the lobby of the local police stations, people might actually hand them in. What criminal is going to walk into a police station with an illegal firearm and hand it in? What criminal is going to belive that nothing will happen to them? They can’t exactly remain anonymous, there are cameras. It is hardly subtle. The police would know it was you. Do myou think they would then just leave you alone? Yeah right.

      2) If these guns being handed in have bee used to committ crimes, what is to stop the police from checking ballistics etc from past crimes to the guns handed in? They would have the weapon, a person in possession of the weapon, a person on camera handing in the weapon….no criminal is going to do that, FACT. It would be the perfect set up.

      3) What would be the case if someone who had the intentions of handing in their gun and was on their way to the police station when they are pulled over and it is discovered they have an illegal firearm in their car? Gun amnesty or not,  do you think the police would actually believe them? I doubt it very much. They would be charged with possesiion of an illegal firearm, plain and simple.

      4) What would be the point of paying these people to bring in their ilegal firearms? They would go out and get another gun, a better one, thats new and hasn’t been used in any crimes in the Cayman Islands.

      5) Amend the firearms law now, emergency meeting to revise and implement the new law that puts anyone found with illegal firearms behind prison for life, end of story. People would then hand them in or we might see a complete turnaround interms of gun crime committed on this island.

      Perhaps if some of those propositionjs were thought out and addressed, then the "gun amnesty" might be a bit more of a success.

  8. Anonymous says:

    A humble suggestion, perhaps if an attractive monetary award was offered more guns might turn up.

    • Anya Solomon says:

      but on the flipside the money could be used to purchase newer fire arms.  Sometimes we gotta think like a criminal.

    • Pending says:

      evidently you didn’t heed point 4