How Much Armed Robbery Goes Unreported In Barbados?

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Keltruth Blog posted the following this morning, but so far I haven’t heard anything on the radio or TV about gunmen doing a robbery on Saturday afternoon…

Gunmen Strike Belle Warehouse!

Two men robbed employees of one of the warehouses in the Belle Estate Yard. They took the day’s takings from these employees at gunpoint. This happened around 3p.m. 2/23/08.

… from Keltruth Blog article Armed Robbery In Barbados – Saturday Afternoon

That got me thinking about a number of gun incidents that I’ve heard about while talking with friends and at work – but that have never been reported in the news media. A few weeks back when those folks from the cruise ship were held up by an armed gang while on Safari Tours, there was practically nothing in the media. Even to this day the Nation News never mentioned it.

This type of censored reporting in the Barbados media is nothing more or less than an attempt to sanitize the news so the tourists aren’t frightened off. While that makes sense from a short-term perspective, the danger is that the true extent of the problem also becomes hidden from the citizens and their elected representatives.

David over at Barbados Underground has coincidentally posted an article today Caribbean & Crime: Prosperity Under Threat. The title nails the issue.

Let’s get something straight folks: Unless tourists and foreign business people feel safe on Barbados, you can kiss goodbye not only tourism, but also offshore banking.

Dear Mr. Prime Minister

We know that the treasury was left bare, and that there is much to be done with our run-down hospital and water supply infrastructure, but if this government does not put public safety, policing and justice right up there as priorities – our foreign cashflow will soon tank.

Barbados needs many more better trained, better equipped police officers on the street NOW.

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20 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Crime & Law, Freedom Of The Press, Traveling and Tourism

20 responses to “How Much Armed Robbery Goes Unreported In Barbados?

  1. Rumplestilskin

    Allegedly, armed robbery is on the increase. Every few weeks we hear about another one.

    However, we are not yet like Jamaica and T&T with a murder every day or two.

    So, I am a bit wary that Thompson has so hastily endorsed CSME, fast on the heels of his predecessor.

    Any immigration and inter-island cooperation must be accompanied by secure immigration laws and policing.

    Without such security controls, we will be at the mercy of criminals from other nations who bring their violence here.

    Having said that, violence stems also from two main sources i.e. the drug culture and wide disparity in living standards in a society, such as both exist in T&T and Jamaica.

    Despite the drug culture here also resulting in violence and robberies, thus far the disparity in living standards is not as significant as Jamaica and T&T. This I believe is the primary reaosn why our problems are not much worse, at this time.

    However, this is why we must prevent further disenfranchisement of locals in terms of land and housing and food, jobs etc.

    Further declines in these areas will inhibit ease of living for much of Barbados and result in exactly what we see in other islands.

    This is why gross overdevelopment in high end living i.e. golf courses etc is its own double-edged sword. While it may bring income to developers in the short-term, it will make things generally more expensive for Barbadians and result in a decline in societal cohesiveness, then resulting in significant problems.

    These extended problems will then make Barbados not attractive to investors and the original investors will ultimately lose out.

    The ‘winners’ will be the large developers who will have made their money up front and ran.

    The rest of us, including foreign investor owners will be the ones to bear the result.

    As such, any development must be limited, planned carefully and planned to be integral to a cohesive Barbados.

    Peace.

  2. Private Pirates

    well recently I heard about a tour-bus at Gun Hill, where everyone on board were relieve of all personal belongings, don’t know how true, but I hear over 200 people repeating it. But nowadays or since then, I seeing 2 tour-buses together wherever now. Guess safety in numbers really matter now.

    Some one need to ask the tour operators if it did happen.

  3. Pingback: » Tourist Harassment - Barbados Survey Results Keltruth Corp.: News Blog of Keltruth Corp. - Miami, Florida, USA.

  4. Jinx

    The police more often than not cannot do thier jobs without public support and from experience they really ought to have a better understanding of public relations before displaying such moronic behavior to persons willing to supply information!

  5. Anonymous Too

    This post by BFP almost prophetic.

    Another robbery another shooting today in Barbados at the FICB bank warrens.

    Is there a foreign connection like we saw 2 weeks ago with those 2 guyanese who were charged for a string of burglaries across the parishes of St Phillip and Christ Church?

    Where are these persons bajan or not getting the guns from?

    You have to have lots of money to purchase ammunition and to be able to secrete it into containers or other shipment coming in.

    Are certain so-called ‘business people’ involved in the illegal trade?

  6. Anonymous X

    There was another one this morning at warrens. At least Inspector Barry Hunte came on radio soliciting the public’s assistance.

  7. Haras

    There was another one this afternoon at Springvale Eco-heritage Museum in St. Andrew. I heard about it from an eyewitness.

    A fellow in a ski mask and jogging clothes came out of a waiting car and held up two cars of tourists (German and Russian) who had just arrived at this Scotland district site, plus the proprietor of the museum. The robber had a snub-nosed revolver of some sort. Having taken the people’s money and whatever passports were available, he ran to his accomplice in the waiting car and they fled the scene.

    Their modus operandi and their car also fits the description of robberies that occurred earlier this month. They seem to like remote places.

    These incidents do seem to be occurring more frequently. An email that arrived just moments ago contained a first-person account of being tailed at night while driving on a dark stretch of Highway 2A, from Bakers on south. From the description of events, it was not paranoia but definitely someone (actually two cars) following her.

    I agree with the writer above who said that this rising pattern of crime could be our undoing. I also second the question expressed by another, who wondered how the guns are getting in.

    Heaven help us … ’cause we aren’t doing too well at stopping this ourselves, and it’s not as though the signs haven’t been there for some time.

    H.

  8. Pingback: Report Of Armed Robbery Of Tourists At Barbados Springvale Eco-Heritage Museum « Barbados Free Press

  9. Kadri

    dont you people think its stupid that people are searched at the airports and not a single fisherman’s boat is searched?

    what about port st charles?

  10. Eddie

    The Govt. needs to revise certain aspects of the CSME as it relates to immigration before it is too late.
    A couple Advisory Bulletins from Uncle Sam and Britannia – we can kiss our Tourism Industry goodbye!

    DLP, we need you to act now and fast!

  11. boom

    The tourist industry in Barbados will definitely take a hit if crime keeps up there.

    Ask the Jamaicans what happens when the tourist dollar stops coming.

    Right now there’s not much news about crime coming from Barbados…but if the U.S. advisories start to mention armed robberies of tourist on the small island or just one murder…the buck will slow.

    People don’t want to get robbed or hurt when on vacation, they’ll go elsewhere.

    Jamaica and Puerto Rico are begging for tourist…Forget T&T and Guyana there not even listed on most travel sites.

  12. Sundowner

    The British and US Governments have warned travelers about the problems in Guyana.

  13. White boy

    The Police definitely need the assistance from the Public and when we see a crime or suspicious activity it is our civic obligation to call the police and NOT wait to hear what happend and then tell yuh friends that you had seen that person earlier. Police need the information and need it as early as possible in order to capture the bad guys.

    I also want to say that the police in return also have to learn to respect people and respond to peoples needs. To many times I have walked into a police station and see a number of personel sitting behind the desk chatting and nobody even acknowledges you. When you call to report a crime or suspicious person you are made to feel like you are wasting their time. The worst of all is when you call 211 and nobody answers. This blows me away as you might be calling this emergancy number as your only chance when you would probably be better of calling a friend.

    Yes the police force is understaffed and under paid and I think that Commissioner Dottin is doing a reasonably good job considering his challenges. But more has to be done and done soon.

  14. Kat

    We not far behind T’dad no J’ca. Maybe Guyana. I will say it again, bring back the hangman!!!!

  15. I received a local warning in my email this morning about an attempted carjacking on Thursday, 21 Feb in the brightly lit car park of TGI Fridays, right in the busy heart of the South Coast tourist area.

    The bandit held a gun to the head of the driver, demanding the car keys, then to his wife’s head. Four others in their party (I believe they were all members of the Canadian Womens’ Club) saw what was happening and started shouting for help. The would-be carjacker jumped into a waiting car driven by a female accomplice. and made off. That car was later found abandoned, no doubt having been stolen.

    I do not know if this has appeared in the local news. Perhaps there are other such instances being concealed from tourists and the general public? I am also uncertain whether this incident was reported to the Hastings Police Station, and if it wasn’t, that could account for it not being made public.

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  17. chris

    We were robbed last week and the police did not want us to report this shocking event
    We will not be back

  18. @ Deb Thomas, I heard about the incident but do not recall if it was in the local media.
    Other people who have been robbed won’t bother to report it to the police. Spending time at the police station can be more frustrating than being robbed. That I can tell you from personal experience.

  19. Adrian Loveridge

    Chris,

    Please let me have details of the incident and I will ensure the Police Tourism Liason Officer is made aware of it.

  20. Dianesyms

    On march 1st my husband and I were robbed on the beach between the savannah and Hilton hotel @ 2pm he then fired a gun to stop us chasing him I have seen no report of this robbery on any of the barbados crime news , I then found out when reading a article that a woman had been robbed of a gold chain the same morning and then two weeks later a couple robbed and shot in bridge town which is 5 mins down the road from our robbery no one advised us of the dangers the police were very slow in responding we never heard any thing from the police before leaving the island on the 8th of march . Why has our robbery not been reported ?