– claims serious crime down by 19%Despite crime appearing to be spiralling out of control with an almost daily occurrence of armed robberies throughout the country, the Guyana Police Force (GPF) is holding out that serious crime is on the decline.Updating the media on the country’s crime rates, acting Police Commissioner David Ramnarine has disclosed that during the comparative period of January 1 to September 23, serious crimes has declined by 19 per cent.This, he noted, was as a result of an 11 per cent decrease in murder, that is, 99 cases so far this year compared to 111 last year for the same period. Ramnarine noted that the “very high and acceptable” 62 per cent clearup in cases has significantly contributed to this.“This is consistent with statements that have been made before that we are benefiting from and are putting into effect much needed training that we’ve received recently, resources that we’ve received and other interests that have been given to the Force to make it able to better respond to the needs of society.”As it relates to robberies, the acting Top Cop disclosed that robbery with firearms saw a 10 per cent decrease with 528 cases this year against 584 last year; there was a 19 per cent reduction in robberies in which other instruments were used with 225 cases this year against 277 last year; robbery with violence recorded a 20 per cent decrease with 76 cases against 97 last year.He continued that larceny from the person also saw a 38 per cent reduction with 86 cases this year against 138 cases last year, while break and enter and larceny recorded a 23 per cent decrease with 155 cases against 189 last year.Additionally, there was a 22 per cent decline of rape with 185 against 237 last year.The acting Commissioner further highlighted that ‘A’ Division (Georgetown/East Bank Demerara) is experiencing a 24 per cent decrease in serious crimes; ‘B’ Division (Berbice), a 14 per cent decrease; ‘C’ Division (East Coast Demerara), an 11 per cent decrease; ‘D’ Division (West Demerara/East Bank Essequibo), a nine per cent increase; ‘E’ Division (Linden/Kwakwani), a 27 per cent decrease; ‘F’ Division (Bartica/Interior), a 51 per cent decrease and ‘G’ Division (Essequibo Islands) recorded a 29 per cent decrease in serious crimes.With regards to the increase in D’ Division, Ramnarine noted that the figure was much highest two months ago. “Some work has been done but more work needs to be done. It has reduced to nine per cent now but it has to come a lot lower than that,” he remarked.The acting Top Cop added too that there has been quite a few robberies in ‘A’ Division within the past week-and-a-half as such some revision has been done and additional work will be executed to curb this.Ramnarine continued that with good law enforcement efforts, the Force has been able to reduce indictable crimes for the period August 1 to September 15, by 28 per cent. He explained that he conducted an analysis during the holiday period because in preceding years, there is usually a spike in serious crimes during that period.“I began to pay particularly attention to it in collaboration with the Divisional Commanders and others. We all worked collaboratively and this year, we are pleased to inform you that there was no spike this year. In fact, we had a 28 per cent decrease in serious crimes for that period,” he revealed.When compared to 2014, there was a 21 per cent increase in serious crimes last year and according to Ramnarine, there was acceptance of the spike in crime during the August holiday period however, he has since resolved to break this trend.“It’s not always a wise thing to use the past as a guide for the future. You use the past to assess what happened in the past, not to accept what happened in the past ‘cause you’re living in the present and you got to deal with the present and the future,” he indicated.Moreover, when asked about the public perception that crime might be on the increase, the acting Top Cop stated that the situation is not as extreme as being perceived.“I have released the figures, and I fully understand some people saying there is a dark side of crime, (but) perception is nine-tenths of reality. There is a perception out there but I think some people are taking it too far to say there is a crime situation…Its not a crime situation,” he posited.Nevertheless, Ramnarine is urging Guyanese to take extra steps to ensure their safety even in the comfort of their homes.