Regional

New head of police Area 2 says change is coming

Monday, September 04, 2017

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Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Norman Heywood, who has responsibility for Police Area Two, last week assured St Ann residents that under his leadership, policing in the parish will improve.

Heywood, who recently took over the reins from ACP Fitz Bailey, said police in the area will be operating using the 'Three-R' approach — rapid response, respect and reassurance.

Heywood was addressing residents at a town hall meeting at Evansville Conference Centre in St Ann's Bay, St Ann, on Thursday, when he made the disclosure.

Stating that “respect begets respect”, the area commander insisted that the police must respect all.

At the same time, he said the police are working to reassure residents that crime is not out control.

Heywood said contrary to what many believe, he has been analysing the data and realises that shootings are not random happenings.

He said research will show that many of the people who have been killed have direct ties to criminality, or is related to someone who does.

Security Minister Robert Montague, who also addressed the town hall meeting, added that the majority of the killings in Jamaica are not random. He said 82 per cent of killings were gang or domestic-related.

In the meantime, residents called on Montague to provide additional resources for the security force.

One resident pointed out that the upper floor of the St Ann's Bay Police Station is in a very deplorable condition and asked that the minister move to address the situation immediately.

Residents in Runaway Bay have also called on the minister to provide an additional vehicle to police in that area, as the vehicle used by police there is shared with the police in Discovery Bay.

Another resident from McNie, a community which lies on the St Ann/Clarendon border, urged the police to consider setting up a post in the area.

The resident pointed out that the nearest police station is in Claremont, which is over seven miles away from the community.

“Can we get a substation in McNie?” the resident asked.

She said whenever there are issues in the community, the length of time the police take to get there is unacceptable.

ACP Heywood and the head of the St Ann police Superintend Gary Francis said they will be looking at the feasibility of a substation in the community.

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