22 Jul 2020

TTPS rising

I am pleased that the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) is pleased with their ‘100%’ rise in detection rate for murders. According to Deputy Commissioner for Intelligence and Investigations McDonald Jacob:

"In the first four and a half months for 2020, we had solved 20 murders but from middle of May to date we have solved 21 murders, showing a 100 per cent improvement in our detection rate.” [Newsday, TV6 21/07/2020]

The other side of that ‘glossy’ statistic is not so rosy however.

For years the murder detection/solve rate has been less than 10%. No lie. I have been monitoring this since 2007, right here on this blog. Typically, the ‘solve rate’ hovers between 4% to 6%.

This year, 2020, TTPS has risen to heights hitherto unseen, by reaching a whopping 20% solve rate. Of course, that included the domestic cases where the perpetrators are usually known/caught at the scene/or surrender.

Looking at the bigger picture, there are some 252 murders to date, meaning the police only solved 16%. Now, remember that this is by police standards… Which is not very high apparently, since the conviction rate – which comes after the arrest and prosecution – is a mere 1% of the ‘solve rate’ quoted by TTPS. Has that sunk in yet? In other words, the police standard of evidence and detection is so low that a court finds it reliable only 1% of the time!

In the Latin Americas and Caribbean, Trinidad and Tobago ranks fourth in number of homicides per 100,000 citizens – 37.4. We are only surpassed by Venezuela, Jamaica and Honduras. [https://www.statista.com/statistics/947781/homicide-rates-latin-america-caribbean-country/]

I am pleased that TTPS is pleased. I am NOT pleased they are so easily pleased.