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New homicides ‘saddens my heart, feels like nothing has changed'– Ex Top Cop

- Michael B. Matthews calls or Virgin Islanders to accept responsibility to bring forward evidence in unsolved cases
Ex-Commissioner of Police, Mr Michael B. Matthews says receiving news of new homicides in the Virgin Islands is something that saddens him as the former commissioner in the Virgin Islands since it feels like nothing has changed. Photo: Facebook/File
 The Former top cop was a guest on the December 11, 2022, edition of Talking Points on ZBVI 780am with co-hosts Violet Thomas-Gaul and Damien C. Grange. Photo: Facebook
The Former top cop was a guest on the December 11, 2022, edition of Talking Points on ZBVI 780am with co-hosts Violet Thomas-Gaul and Damien C. Grange. Photo: Facebook
BAUGHERS BAY, Tortola, VI - Ex-Commissioner of Police Mr Michael B. Matthews says receiving news of new homicides in the Virgin Islands is something that saddens him as the former commissioner in the Virgin Islands, since it feels like nothing has changed.

Mr Matthews was at the time speaking on the December 12, 2022, edition of Talking Points on ZBVI 780 AM with co-hosts Violet Thomas-Gaul and Damion C. Grange on the topic of the local police not being able to solve several homicides.

It was on the same day a man was gunned down in East End, the 7th fatal shooting for 2022. 

Lack oftTrust & confidence in police are barriers- Mr Matthews 

According to the former Commissioner, between the year 2000 and April 2021, there were around 70 homicides recorded in the territory of which over half had been detected and people had been arrested, charged, and were either awaiting trial or have been convicted and sentenced.

“So it is not correct to sort of suggest that the majority of homicides are not detected but of course, there is still a significant number of undetected homicides in the territory,” Mr Matthews said. 

He added, however, that stories of new homicides still sadden him as a former commissioner of police in the territory.

“It saddens my soul and my heart every time I hear that on the news, because it feels like nothing is changing… But you know, this situation is not going to change until we overcome some real barriers that still exist here today in 2022, going into 2023,” he added.

Those barriers, he said, are concerned with trust, confidence, and about the local community being prepared to stand up and say enough is enough.

'Detecting serious offenses are very complex'

“What people talk about is they use the language that police have not solved these murders, they've not solved these crimes, and very often you see the bloggers lambasting the Commissioner of Police and saying, you're failing us, you're not solving these crimes." 

Mr Matthews reminded that policing, solving, and detecting serious offenses are very complex things to do because the only way to detect a crime of that nature, is by finding who the killer is, taking them off the streets and then placing them before a court.

“Now, to do that, to take somebody's liberty away… you've got to have substantial evidence, and that evidence is not easy to find in such a small community like ours, because people are frightened to come forward, people are reluctant to say what they saw,” he said.

Persons urged to come forward with evidence 

He said the only way those in the VI are going to feel safe is by everyone accepting that responsibility to say what they saw.

He said it is a fact that if someone is a witness to something, at some point they would have to stand in a courtroom, in front of a judge or a magistrate, and say what they saw publicly as a public duty.

23 Responses to “New homicides ‘saddens my heart, feels like nothing has changed'– Ex Top Cop”

  • Hands of Justice (16/12/2022, 12:25) Like (8) Dislike (0) Reply
    Youngest victim was 11yrs old!!! That by itself says A LOT
  • ???? (16/12/2022, 12:41) Like (2) Dislike (2) Reply
    see something say something yuh sayy?? NO SAHH
  • home (16/12/2022, 12:46) Like (11) Dislike (0) Reply
    Families must understand. When their child/children are in this thing, is either death or jail.
  • y (16/12/2022, 13:03) Like (4) Dislike (1) Reply
    Fell that way , the people who running the country and these so called holy men don't seem to mind , they are more into pushing racism and colonialism rethoric and go about their merry way as if everything is alright while we are losing the innocence we once enjoyed , those of them who is enjoying that blood money is in for a rude awakening , and it has nothing to do with Santa ????
  • FREE ADVICE (16/12/2022, 13:32) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
    Tell your cops to act more professional on the crime scenes
  • No fear (16/12/2022, 13:39) Like (7) Dislike (0) Reply
    You Will always be sadden because it would Change because the street's not helping the police
  • @ hands of justice (16/12/2022, 13:41) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    U should know by now that ( JUSTICE ) is a thing of the past / ( only street justice ) which of politicians and pastors / bishop etc , that you hear saying anything about what is really going on here ( guns , murder ,cocaine etc ???? check out those who showing up with a whole set of sweet talk , you would think they were sent by the lord to save the world from what they themselves created ( I still feel for that innocent , (11 years old child whose life was taken away so brutally ) , that was a sign of things to come . They even have youths ( DISAPPEARING ) did you even hear a wisper from anyone of these hypocrites called politicians or those men of the cloth or even the Christian council wannabe on any of what I mentioned ????
  • justin (16/12/2022, 13:47) Like (6) Dislike (4) Reply
    under the watchful eyes of police commissioners from united kingdom serious crimes in this territory have risen and maybe out of control at this stage

    take a look back under command of frazer & malone where we had stop an search and crime was a bit lower

    Under webb, moris, matthwes and the new chat all sent here by the united kingdom crime have gradually increased

    you see a whole army of police at a crime scene or traffic accident but where are these same police from day to day just moving about this small island in an effort to prevent crime

    • Local (16/12/2022, 15:22) Like (4) Dislike (1) Reply
      @justin well said every year more officer being hired and you still cant see them patrolling or doing stop and search vehicle tinted heavy and these scooter riders moving through the place with guns and drug dodging in and out , police seems to be afraid of these criminals and government needs to step up and pass legislation from playing so the police can have power to seize property from criminal proceeds .The BVI is at place if we dont stop these killing or economy will be in trouble.
      • @local (17/12/2022, 00:18) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
        Ask them how many of those officers that they have hired for the past five years are still working in the force? A whole lot left that force for so many reasons. You might hear they are hiring, but they never stay long.
    • lol (16/12/2022, 15:44) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
      By the boat loads going lobster fest and poker run
    • @justin (17/12/2022, 00:34) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      Or it could be the fact that the population has grown since then.... please think logically...
      • @@Justin (17/12/2022, 07:44) Like (0) Dislike (1) Reply
        It has nothing to do with Population size. It has to do with Agenda ability and having a keen interest in your country.
  • @ justin (16/12/2022, 14:19) Like (5) Dislike (1) Reply
    U got to be joking , this is different era / the guns and cocaine was not here at that time , so you cannot compare , unless you you talking sh*t to fool people
  • MY OPINION (16/12/2022, 15:40) Like (10) Dislike (5) Reply
    I only trust the police from the UK.
  • Community (16/12/2022, 20:32) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    The guy was on the radio encouraging people to create Air BnB's.... and welcome new tourists through the straight flights to the BVI. But we got too much work to do
  • Black police (16/12/2022, 23:26) Like (2) Dislike (1) Reply
    Sell out
    No confidence
    Cannot be trusted
    Cover up
    Need training
    • @ Black Police (17/12/2022, 07:48) Like (1) Dislike (3) Reply
      White Police

      No Confidence
      Knows about lewd parties by a certain group
      No Interest in saving country
      Black Police does all the work and dont get half the pay.
      Plays mind games with society.
  • Rankin (17/12/2022, 00:16) Like (2) Dislike (3) Reply
    Go home!!!!!!! You done enough damage already. Wicked man!!
  • Norris Turnbull (17/12/2022, 12:12) Like (7) Dislike (0) Reply
    Matthew's please. You were at the helm. What did YOU do to curb crime in the virgin islands?
  • Interesting (20/12/2022, 10:20) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    It's so funny and amazing while he was the COP he wasn't as vocal with the crimes and the state of the police department as he is now.

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