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Police 'solve' 30 killings in 2012

By Jensen LaVende jensen.lavende@trinidadexpress.com

FROM January 1 to July 25, police officers have "solved" 30 of the country's 236 murders committed this year, representing (12.7 per cent), with 14 of the cases occurring in July.

According to official statistics, which came from the Crime and Problem Analysis unit (CAPA) of the Police Service and were provided to the Express yesterday, police have recorded a total of 252 homicides—the unlawful killing of another person —while there have been 236 recorded murders—the intentional killing of a person.

Although those charged are presumed innocent, police use the term "solve" when someone is charged for an offence rather than when a person is convicted.

The murder toll for the comparative period last year and the year before stood at 234 and 302, respectively. For the same period last year, police solved 50 of its recorded murders while they solved 72 the year before.

The difference between the murder toll and the homicide toll, according to the statistics, included two manslaughter incidents, five deaths sent for a coroner's inquest, eight police killings and one homicide awaiting the instruction of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

The last murder to be "solved" was the killing of 89-year-old Catherine Ann Corrion.

An elder in the Spiritual Baptist faith, Corrion, of Railway Road, Siparia, was allegedly beaten on her head with a stone by 30-year-old Denzil Garcia while she sat in her gallery.

Garcia appeared in court last Friday and will have to reappear in court on August 3.

In a telephone interview with the Express yesterday, police spokesman Sgt Wayne Mystar said the figures were just a representation of the murders "solved" so far and the numbers will be increasing as time goes by.

"It's just a matter of acquiring the necessary evidence; people are presently being interviewed. We have suspects (in custody), and it is just a matter of time before they are charged," Mystar said, adding the police would like to see the solve rate at 100 per cent.

He added that police have arrested three men in connection with the murder of Anthony David Charles, 24, of Goodwill Road, Enterprise, Chaguanas, who was shot and killed on Monday night.

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