Men at Work!!! Violent Crimes Down 35% in 2013 Print E-mail
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Written by Shane D. Williams   
Thursday, 09 January 2014 00:00

There are several factors that contributed to the significant reduction in crime witnessed in 2013. Those trying to explain the phenomenon may look at the impact that organizations such as Restore Belize, Community Policing Unit, Youth for the Future, Magazine Road Skills Training Center and Crime Stoppers Belize are having in crime plagued communities. However, if you ask the men who were considered by some as “terrorists”, they will break it down for you in the simplest terms. “We are men at work,” a group working on the Lake Independence Boulevard said laughing. It is that simple. Hundreds of young men from Belize City have been busy earning an honest living in the many infrastructure projects being executed by the Belize City Council and the Government of Belize.

Violent crimes were down by 35 percent nationally in 2013 due in large part to a 42 percent reduction in the Belize District. Violent crimes are murder, rape, robbery and shooting incidents. In 2012 there were 918 such incidents. In 2013 there were 594. Belize District accounted for 61 percent of violent crimes committed nationally with 562 in 2012. In 2013 there were 327 violent crimes committed in the Belize District, 55 percent of violent crimes recorded nationally. There were 145 murders, 28 rapes, 487 robberies and 258 shooting incidents in 2012. In 2013 there were 99 murders (-32%), 26 rapes (-8%), 296 robberies (-39%) and 173 shooting incidents (-33%). There were 90 murders in the Belize District in 2012 and 58 in 2013, a reduction of 36 percent.

There will be more employment opportunities in 2014 as projects being implemented by the Belize Infrastructure Limited (BIL) get off the ground across the country. Mayor Darrel Bradley has also spoken of a phase two of the Belize City Municipal Development Project which will see the concreting of 30 more streets by March of this year and upgrading of the drainage system. The Belize Police Department will also be making improvements on its very effective precinct policing system which has significantly increased police presence in once troubled areas. The precinct policing system has been so effective that the Belize Defense Force soldiers are scheduled to be withdrawn from the city streets early this year.