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CoP against curfew & heightened stop & search operations

- does not believe they will be an effective deterrent to the upsurge in gun crime in the Territory
Police Commissioner Michael B. Matthews does not feel a curfew or the overuse of standard stop/search operations would be effective or a valuable use of limited resources against the gun crimes plaguing the Territory. Photo: VINO/File
Recent shootings in the Virgin Islands include in Baughers Bay on February 6, 2018 where a male was injured, a double homicide on February 10, 2018 near the Althea Scatliffe Primary School and one in Horsepath on February 16, 2018 where a male was injured. Photo: Team of Reporters/File
Recent shootings in the Virgin Islands include in Baughers Bay on February 6, 2018 where a male was injured, a double homicide on February 10, 2018 near the Althea Scatliffe Primary School and one in Horsepath on February 16, 2018 where a male was injured. Photo: Team of Reporters/File
The vehicle that the two male victims were found in following the shooting on February 10, 2018. Photo: Team of Reporters/File
The vehicle that the two male victims were found in following the shooting on February 10, 2018. Photo: Team of Reporters/File
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI- Following an upsurge in gun crime in the Virgin Islands, many on social media have been calling for a return of the curfew lifted in December 2017 and for the police to heighten stop and search operations.

Recent shootings on the Virgin Islands' main island of Tortola include in Baughers Bay on February 6, 2018 where a male was injured, a double homicide on February 10, 2018 near the Althea Scatliffe Primary School and one in Horsepath on February 16, 2018 where a male was injured.

In addition, there have been several reports of gunfire, and on February 20, 2018 a house in Manchester Estate was shot at several times but luckily no one was injured.

“I know that the vast majority of our citizens are good and law-abiding. That is why I personally do not feel a curfew or the overuse of standard stop/search operations would be effective or a valuable use of our limited resources. Targeted, intelligence-led searches are, and that is exactly what we will continue to do,” Police Commissioner Michael B. Matthews expressed in a statement on February 21, 2018.

According to the top cop, when nerves and emotions are already frayed from the inconveniences of recouping loss and rebuilding following the hurricanes of 2017, it is disheartening for the public to have to deal with yet another attack to the psyche, security and stability of life in this small Territory.

‘In time, arrests will come’

Many have also expressed dissatisfaction with the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF) for failing to swiftly bring perpetrators to justice. The RVIPF, on the other hand, has blamed the community for being silent and not providing them with information.

“I will be the first to say that patience is not one of my virtues. I am keen to see offenders brought to justice as quickly as possible. I had grown accustomed to working in jurisdictions where most of the citizens speak out because they are intolerant of criminals pushing and showcasing their gun-wielding lifestyles, and arrests are quickly made. But here in the Territory, it is different. So it will take longer and my detectives will have to work harder to identify and gather the evidence necessary to arrest these criminals, especially in the aftermath of last year’s destructive events that have left the territory vulnerable.”

But, according to Commissioner Matthews, he receives regular briefs from his investigators and he is aware of good progress in a number of key investigations -- investigations that have created concerns for the law abiding communities here in the Territory.

“In time, arrests will come, and I would like the communities we serve to be patient and realistic about the speed of a complex investigation.”

He added, with the small, but growing number of persons coming forward and speaking, the RVIPF is “carrying out these searches, timely and regularly. The more information we have, the more searches we can carry out. Just because you don’t see us doing it, doesn’t mean we are not.”

25 Responses to “CoP against curfew & heightened stop & search operations”

  • We with you (22/02/2018, 08:45) Like (11) Dislike (6) Reply
    Good job Mathews
  • Nickname (22/02/2018, 09:01) Like (45) Dislike (3) Reply
    Is this the blame game or what? Cops blaming the community and viceversa. WTH can you get accomplished if such crap is going on. With all due respect Com. Matthews, do what is necessary for people to feel comfortable again. This is not the time to be worried about nerves and emotions when it comes to stop and search, make it happen and I guarantee you will get results. Sometimes there has to be a state of uncomfortableness if we are to get where we want to go as a people . MAKE IT HAPPEN!!!!!
  • wize up (22/02/2018, 09:12) Like (9) Dislike (0) Reply
    Curfew(no)...stop & search(yes): however under the law stop and search could be questionable: of the 30 thousand people who make this place they home the majority are upstanding: truth be told, it is our own people that fu(& up the place, on one hand you have the politican(white collar crime) and “some” young people(criminal activity).....if you live by the sword, you will die by the sword:
  • Really!? (22/02/2018, 09:20) Like (11) Dislike (1) Reply
    I think we have a good Commissioner, but with what is happening, he must have been drunk when he spoke to the media. We do need heightened stop and searches. Get sober man.
  • Ah boy (22/02/2018, 09:22) Like (7) Dislike (0) Reply
    Common sense just isn't common anymore
  • Bvi weak (22/02/2018, 09:23) Like (6) Dislike (2) Reply
    The police chief got balls to say what he said
  • My Take (22/02/2018, 09:26) Like (5) Dislike (12) Reply
    This man thinks that all of us in the BVI are just one set of crooks and fools so no problem if we kill each other.
  • vi (22/02/2018, 10:46) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    TRUE INTENTIONS SHOWN
  • nothing is wrong (22/02/2018, 11:23) Like (11) Dislike (0) Reply
    with the stop and search but it seems as some people are afraid that they will be exposed. if you don't have anything to hide then you shouldn't worry but it is part of the solution. Make sure it is done at random day and night. Let's work together for a better B BVI
  • Hmmmm (22/02/2018, 11:24) Like (8) Dislike (1) Reply
    What I gather from this is that police has alot of information but wont make moves until they habe built solid cases against the suspects.
  • What about amnesty (22/02/2018, 11:30) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
    Bring in your guns for money or some form of compensation/reward. You may say govt aint got no money but isn't the same money govt may have to use to help bury someone from gun violence.Think about it pls
  • See (22/02/2018, 12:20) Like (2) Dislike (1) Reply
    There seems to be a lot of dreaming here . Thugs are laughing
    • nope (22/02/2018, 15:04) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
      No theyre not laughing they are killing eachother and thr commish and his guys playing chess not checkers. Keep watching!
  • Lemonade. (22/02/2018, 12:48) Like (8) Dislike (0) Reply
    Situation gave you lime make some good lemonade and enjoy it and stop complaining about the oranges.. Get a strategy.. I will suggest for a starter we put skooters on a 6pm to 6am curfew... Then encourage your detectives to get out in the communities and bars at not nights. Give them socializing money get them mingling buying people at the bar drinks. They will talk...
  • Nickname (22/02/2018, 13:54) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    "The RVIPF, on the other hand, has blamed the community for being silent and not providing them with information."


    Oh really
  • liberal (22/02/2018, 13:59) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Michael must have his reasons for saying that as no to police state
  • @Lemonade (22/02/2018, 14:42) Like (6) Dislike (3) Reply
    Give rum- get drunk - talk. May work in another country not here. Even the drunk knows when to keep his mouth shut. On the other hand it is unethical to gather intelligence that way.
    • nonsense (23/02/2018, 06:39) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      The only thing unethical about getting intelligence is doing something against a personal will.. Most people who have things on their minds or info once they start drinking they glad to have someone they trust to spit it out.. Tom drunk but Tom aint stupid..its a situation where you earn aomeone trust.. Let me say this.."Girls and Bars have all the info the cops need".
  • time up (22/02/2018, 14:49) Like (0) Dislike (4) Reply

    for the head of our police to say such ignorance that stop and search operations are not necessary, sounds to me like his time is up. Do you think guns are carried around in shopping carts sir? Nahh they in vehicles and scooters. You are a disappointment. Yes where you come from the citizens help you solve the crime with handing you information on a silver plate and walahh, you get a head start. It aint so in this jurisdiction, so therefore you got to reset your compass.
    • wize up (22/02/2018, 18:18) Like (0) Dislike (1) Reply
      @ time up: border patrol is our biggest problem; stricter enforcement at our ports: the guns or dope must come ashore first before it gets on our streets: our customs needs better vessels similar to what the US coast guards have....but I am definitely for stop and search: those days when we had stop and search the territory had less criminal movements(horse race and bomba shack days were prime stop and search back then)
  • GetsseriousCOP (22/02/2018, 15:07) Like (0) Dislike (4) Reply
    DO Your Damn JOBS... in the week of Jan 28-Feb 02,2018 I say two offices walking in road town, the following week I saw the same thing with the addition of a cop vehicle. It wasn't Until the week of Feb 11 where I saw a substance increase in police presents. What are you being paid for, are they being paid to sit in an A/C building awaiting a call that a crime has been committed what happen to the prevention part of the job.

    THAT TOP COP needs to leave the territory, it is obvious he isn't the right fit. I am a good citizen who wants the best for the VI but would think VERY HARD about reporting for these reason.... for one nothing stays a secret in the VI, along with the lack of privacy it is also a very small place which makes very easy for you to be found....those two things doesn't play well for some one who reports a crime. If I saw a crime I would pray the individual(s) who committed the crime weren't aware of my presents and secondly there was a means by which the crime could be reported and my testimony wasn't needed to bring the person to justice, but I know better.
  • TO (22/02/2018, 18:23) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Well . i now see he and premier working together , preserving their images .
  • Take my advice sir (22/02/2018, 22:48) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    1 stop listen to ur advisor they only look n pension
    2 let ur department heads start going on d streets
    3 more stop n search at night on weekends
    4 look at ur shift pattern to much 8 to 4
    5 have paid informers
    6 enforce helmet on scooter riders no face mass
    7 stop n search scooter riders after 8 at nite
  • Lord o (23/02/2018, 06:41) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Girls and Bars are where all the info is. Lol.. Agreed.


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