Crime Stoppers head disappointed by failure to get 1,000 guns off the streets

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday


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Even with the promise of $2,500 in cash as a reward for information on the location of guns, the police and Crime Stoppers failed to hit their target of getting 1,000 guns off the street between September and December last year.

At a media conference last September, Crime Stoppers director Darrin Carmichael and then acting police commissioner Gary Griffith announced the launch of the programme which aimed to boost efforts by partnering with the public.

Figures sent to Newsday by the police service on Wednesday reported that only 170 guns had been found during the specified period.

Speaking with Newsday on Wednesday, executive manager of Crime Stoppers Garland Samuel admitted he was disappointed in the low figures, saying it was proof that more work was needed to find and seize guns.

“What we want to do is to encourage people to continue to provide information, because the only way we can remove firearms off the street and have a reduction in criminal activity is if the public comes forward and give information.

“Yes, I am disappointed, but it’s more reason for the public to give information, because I think the public is still dissatisfied with the level of criminal activity in the country.”

According to the data, the majority of the weapons were found in the Northern Division, with 37 guns found. The second highest number of guns was 26 found in Port of Spain, and the third highest in the North Eastern Division with 22.

The most common type of gun seized by police during this period was pistols, with revolvers being the second most common, and homemade shotguns the third most common.

A total of 219 guns were found between September and December 2020.