by Eulana Weekes
St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN): The Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force has seized six weapons from the streets of the Federation since the beginning of the year.
A Senior officer in a conversation with a WINN FM reporter said when weapons are removed from the streets, there are some key important matters that the police must execute, such as E- tracing (finding out where the weapon came from), Ballistic testing, record checking to see if the firearm is licensed and, if the weapon is used in a crime, it’s taken to court as an exhibit then returned to police.
In the matter of a homicide, the police seek to find out who committed the murder, date, time and place the homicide was committed, age of the suspect and the motive of the homicide, the police noted.
Units that are most likely to collaborate when a homicide is committed are the Violent Crime Unit – which investigates all homicides, assisted by the Criminal Investigation Department and also the Crime Scene Unit, which processes the scene, conducts ballistics or uses science and technology to help with the solving of crimes.
Despite receiving support from the public sometimes, the police said community support for the police remains a challenge, as persons are in fear of being attacked. Additionally, gang-related murders are occasionally difficult to solve, said the senior police; explaining that sometimes gang members do not cooperate with the police because they have a desire to retaliate.
The senior officer also believes that mental health of officers should be taken into consideration. The officer suggested the need for the return of a psychiatrist specifically attached to the Ministry of National Security. He said the psychiatrist’s support is not only beneficial to officers but also to give support to grieving families.
“The story of a murder is always sad, but typically because of the nature of the job, officers become numb; focusing on the task at hand” said the senior police officer.
A homicide is the killing of a human being by another. There were 11 homicides recorded in the country in 2022; some were committed by gun and others by sharp objects. The motive for the homicides ranged from drug-related issues to domestic disputes.