Police officers during traffic exercises
Photo Credit: BVI Platinum News
Commissioner of Police, Michael Matthews was proud to announced that a significant amount of new recruits have recently been sworn into the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force.
While speaking to members of the media, the Commissioner noted that the officers were sworn in on Thursday, March 16.
He further noted that training for the new officers is scheduled to commence sometime next week, with 26 regular officers and 4 auxiliary officers, set to undergo training.
The Commissioner also noted that the training and other much needed advancements for the force will be facilitated through additional funding which the force will receive, following an increase in their budget.
“The immediate impacts of the funds are going to be around training for officers plus additional equipment. Plus the opportunity to bring in on a short term basis, additional murder inquiry detectives from the UK, who can be used to increase the capability in a short term, so that we can address the most recent incidents that have been happening," Matthews stated.
He continued to explain that the investment in new equipment will see the purchase of new computer software; increase in CCTV capabilities for the Territory; and equipment to enhance the marine capabilities.
“It’s good news whenever there is an investment in the security of the Territory. Our job is of course to keep people safe and I think the Governor recognized that so he’s made a decision to increase the budget.”
Commissioner Matthews stated that crime has continued to fall in the Territory, adding that at the end of February 2017, crime was down five percent when compared to the end of February 2016.
He added, "However, incidents of serious violence have not decreased. So while we are seeing thefts, car crimes, criminal damages and burglaries reduced, we are also seeing more killing on our streets, more robberies and we've seen the unacceptable use of illegal firearms in the Territory; and it is those areas that we very much have to focus our attention to."
Matthews went on to highlight that additional monies granted to the local police force, will go to combating the more serious crimes that are affecting innocent people in the Territory.