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Bombi
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July 11, 2011 5:44 pm  

The girl that was killed was the daughter of a gentleman that worked for me occasionally. Three of his daughters were there on the Boardwalk. The Altercation was the result of a boy who was dating 2 of the girls. The girl that was killed was threatened earlier in the evening and then later attacked by the 2 girls with a box cutter and a knife. Yes the saturation patrol responded but why wasn't there a greater police presence? And why does the Christiansted Police sub-station close at 5 PM. Why are 16 YO girls walking with weapons?
This is very sad and Bevin, the father is beside himself with grief.
Express your outrage to the governor http://www.governordejongh.com/contact/index.html

It is rumored that a 2nd girl has died as a result of her injuries


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stiphy
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July 11, 2011 7:22 pm  

Thanks for the update Bombi. This story is so typical, girls fighting over cheating boys and isn't limited to just teenagers. I wish someone would teach these girls and women to have some self respect rather than resort to violence. It's a shame...

As for police presence and lighting, as I said in my first post, I know it won't solve the problems that we have here, they are far deeper than that. BUT there also should be a place where people can go for some nightlife and feel relatively safe. It seems to me the best place for this would be downtown Christiansted as that is where there is the highest concentration of restaurants and night spots giving the best "bang for the buck" on patrols. These establishments all pay taxes, lure tourists, and help the economy. In return an attempt should be made to protect them and their patrons (which is most of us who live here in addition to tourists) from the problems of the island to some degree. The fact that the substation closes at 5pm and that on most nights there is no regular police presence in town after 9pm at all is absurd.

Sean


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stiphy
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July 11, 2011 7:40 pm  

Not that it will matter but I did as Bombi said and sent this to Gov. de Jongh:

Governor de Jongh,

I am writing you today with much sadness after having witnessed some horrifying events in downtown Christiansted over the last week. I had visitors in town from the continent who wanted to go out in the evening to see the town. On Tuesday July 5 we were at the Fort Christiansted Brewpub when, at approximately 11:30pm, someone fired a gun on the boardwalk in the presence of the large crowd. My visitors, myself, and the 50 plus patrons at the restaurant all "ducked" for safety. Fortunately no one was hit, although I hear that the shooting later that night was possibly related to this incident. Note that I didn't see any police response to the gun shots within the 30 minutes I remained on site, a lot of scared patron's immediately went home though.

Then as the "Jump Up" celebration was winding down on Friday July 8th my visitors were walking along the boardwalk near the abandoned "Stixx" location to meet up with me when a fight broke out. As I'm sure you are aware multiple young girls were stabbed and one, possibly two ended up dead in a tragic fight. While I don't wish to minimize what happened to the injured parties at all, the impression that this left on my visitor's, who were covered in blood that splattered on them, who had been present during a gun fight three nights earlier, was that St. Croix was out of control with crime. One of my three friends was actually here to interview for a teaching position with the Department of Education, I'm not sure how keen he is to relocate here after his experience.

I ask you Governor de Jongh, does it make sense to have a police substation in Christiansted that shuts down nightly at 5pm? Does it make sense to not have multiple officers on regular patrol at night in town late into the night so that tourists and hardworking locals who want some form of nightlife can enjoy themselves without fear of ending up a victim of crime? Christiansted has the highest concentration of restaurants and night spots on St. Croix, and while the police can't be everywhere, not having any regular patrols downtown at night is absurd. Also, the sad shape of the boardwalk and the lighting, especially in the area where the tragic fight occurred on Friday is unacceptable. I know these are tough economic times but the first and foremost responsibility of the VI Government is to ensure the safety of its citizens. We demand more and I hope you are up to the challenge.

Sean


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Cruz
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July 11, 2011 7:52 pm  

The girl that was killed was the daughter of a gentleman that worked for me occasionally. Three of his daughters were there on the Boardwalk. The Altercation was the result of a boy who was dating 2 of the girls. The girl that was killed was threatened earlier in the evening and then later attacked by the 2 girls with a box cutter and a knife. Yes the saturation patrol responded but why wasn't there a greater police presence? And why does the Christiansted Police sub-station close at 5 PM. Why are 16 YO girls walking with weapons?
This is very sad and Bevin, the father is beside himself with grief.
Express your outrage to the governor http://www.governordejongh.com/contact/index.html

It is rumored that a 2nd girl has died as a result of her injuries

You should should refer your questions and concerns to Chief Howell. I'm hearing folks say that he was on the radio today claiming that he had 33 officers at the Jump Up.

That's hard to believe when it's also been reported that there were numerous police officers in Frederiksted conducting saturated patrol and they were also putting on a show for the video cameras in order to put on tv.


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marlene
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July 11, 2011 8:05 pm  

From what I heard, the police presence was good until about 10:45. They were all sitting on the wall and it was quiet so the officer in charge said to call it a night. The girls who started the altercation may have been waiting for this since it happened immediately afterwards.


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stiphy
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July 11, 2011 8:08 pm  

Cruz,

I think Chief Howell is actually correct. I didn't count them but if I had to guess I'd say I saw around 30 officers respond after the incident. The question I would have is where were they before and during the incident.

And my other concern is why don't we have more officers patroling on non-jump up nights.

Sean


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Neil
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July 11, 2011 8:19 pm  

Summer is when the murder rate rises, then again in fall for summer murder retalliation.
These kids can't find summer employment.

Summer not so much.
But yes, accding to the Chief of Police, many homicides are retaliation homicides.

In 2010, our worst year, the summer was relatively 'quiet'.
http://stcroixsource.com/content/news/local-news/2011/01/03/homicide-rate-set-record-2010-gains-were-made

2009: 56 overall.
2010: 44 of 66 by July 12.
2011: 27 by July 11.

http://stcroixsource.com/content/news/police/2010/11/11/homicides-2010

Horrible numbers headed in the right direction.


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Cruz
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July 11, 2011 8:25 pm  

Note that I didn't see any police response to the gun shots within the 30 minutes I remained on site, a lot of scared patron's immediately went home though.

Cruz,

I think Chief Howell is actually correct. I didn't count them but if I had to guess I'd say I saw around 30 officers respond after the incident. The question I would have is where were they before and during the incident.

Howell and his 30 officers were busy filming their TV show in Frederiksted.


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speee1dy
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July 11, 2011 10:11 pm  

I don't know if more police presence would have done much in this situation. if it was really over a guy ( seriously girls, get a clue and have some self respect ) it would have happened somewhere else had it not been there. and where were the parents of the underage girls. why were they out that late at night. Am not at all saying any thing negative about the parenting, but was just curious.
i feel bad for the families of all of the girls involved in this situation.


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Jumbie
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July 11, 2011 11:08 pm  

I was told that the parents of some of these teenage girls had specifically told them to come home early after jump up and not to linger downtown.


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Bombi
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July 11, 2011 11:16 pm  

Yes the comments about parenting are most likely correct, however this is an open trusting culture that needs to catch up. The comments about police presense is spot on. A better presence is necessary as is a well lite, clear path to the government parking lot. We see it as a no braner. On another note, we have a St Croix Administrator, who is like a mayor but pretty much a kush position. Lets find out what this dude is supposed to do for his money and his staff and probably a car and an expense account. What's up with that?


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southernsweetie
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July 12, 2011 8:08 am  

I've been meaning to ask these questions, so in light of this post, this is as good a place as any.

Are there jails or prisons on the islands?
Are the islands subject to the same laws as the states?
Is the court system the same?

The 16 year olds I know don't carry box cutters and knives... is that typical?

Is crime more prevalent on one island over another?
Are there areas of each island to be more careful in?

Someone mentioned gangs. Are there several gangs?
Are they a huge issue?
What is being done to combat them?

How does a police station close at 5pm? They aren't open 24/7?

I don't come from a place of high crime, I grew up in the suburb with THE LOWEST crime in the area. Where I live now, is not known for crime either. I am curious about the feel of each island and the undercurrent it has. I would like to be able to know my kids won't be shot at during dinner.


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Bombi
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July 12, 2011 12:22 pm  

I've been meaning to ask these questions, so in light of this post, this is as good a place as any.

Are there jails or prisons on the islands?
Are the islands subject to the same laws as the states?
Is the court system the same?

The 16 year olds I know don't carry box cutters and knives... is that typical?

Is crime more prevalent on one island over another?
I can only speak or STX but there is definitely less in STJ

Are there areas of each island to be more careful in?
Yes, near public housing and late at night in town

Someone mentioned gangs. Are there several gangs?
Are they a huge issue?
What is being done to combat them?

There is a lot of rhetoric about dealing with gang type behavior but not a lot of substantial action. There are small groups of Bloods and Cripts, I only am aware of this by seeing the Tagging.

How does a police station close at 5pm? They aren't open 24/7?

In Christiansted town there is two. one a 24 hour full service at Bastian Triangle and another closer to the Boardwalk a 1/4 mile away from the other one.

I don't come from a place of high crime, I grew up in the suburb with THE LOWEST crime in the area. Where I live now, is not known for crime either. I am curious about the feel of each island and the undercurrent it has. I would like to be able to know my kids won't be shot at during dinner.

I come from the sticks as well but I feel relatively safe. I/We go out early and go home early. Where you live has an effect on your perception of being safe.
It is getting better by very small degrees at a very slow pace, or is that my eternal optimism showing through.


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terry
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July 12, 2011 1:54 pm  

The police anywhere are not there to "protect you", they are there to get the bad guy, usually after the fact. Yes they try to protect but it is not always possible.
In this case, 300 police would not have stopped this from happening. It may have stopped it from happening at the Boardwalk.
The people in question were not out to hurt anyone not involved. Yes a bystander could have been hurt, but according to Stiphy's friend, they said Excuse, Excuse when she approached this person to pick up the knife that was dropped.
Yes something must be done. When they find these girls, they must throw the book at them. Everyone of them should be charged with murder or conspiracy. But with the courts that we have now, everywhere not just in the USVI, that probably won't happen. It is a shame.


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piaa
 piaa
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July 12, 2011 2:04 pm  

I read they are in custody - from todays St John Source........

"The names of the two alleged perpetrators charged with murder have not been released by police because they are minors. They are in custody at St. Croix's Youth Rehabilitation Center"

http://stjohnsource.com/content/news/local-news/2011/07/12/st-croix-police-plan-curfew-crackdown-wake-friday-death

Pia


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Neil
 Neil
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July 12, 2011 2:24 pm  

I've been meaning to ask these questions, so in light of this post, this is as good a place as any.

Are there jails or prisons on the islands?
Are the islands subject to the same laws as the states?
Is the court system the same?

The 16 year olds I know don't carry box cutters and knives... is that typical?

Is crime more prevalent on one island over another?
Are there areas of each island to be more careful in?

Someone mentioned gangs. Are there several gangs?
Are they a huge issue?
What is being done to combat them?

How does a police station close at 5pm? They aren't open 24/7?

I don't come from a place of high crime, I grew up in the suburb with THE LOWEST crime in the area. Where I live now, is not known for crime either. I am curious about the feel of each island and the undercurrent it has. I would like to be able to know my kids won't be shot at during dinner.

Yes, we have a prison.
Yes, we have the same basic laws as found in the states, though each state/territory has its variations.
Yes, pretty much the same court system, just not always well run.
Gangs by definition carry weapons.
Yes, we have gangs, like every other area of the country.
We don't know if these girls were in a 'gang'.
Yes, they have an anti-gang initiative that stepped up last year and seems to be helping.
What happened was not a random act of violence.
No amount of police can stop a murderous teenager bent on revenge.

The islands are not the suburbs. If they were, I wouldn't live here!
The islands are small. Here you rub elbows with all aspects of society. In that respect only, it is more like living in a big city.
The Carribean has always had higher crime than the states. It's basically a third-world country with great beaches and awesome weather. Would I bring young children here? Nope.


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stiphy
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July 12, 2011 3:16 pm  

I agree on the stabbing, there was police presence at jump up and they responded en mass and quickly in the aftermath of what happened. The only thing I could see investigating is that with 30 officers on duty why there were none stationed on the boardwalk that could've broken this fight up before it turned deadly. It's not like his happened in an alley somewhere, it was right on the main strip of the boardwalk where one of the 30 officers should've been present or nearby. Also the horrible lighting on that stretch likely contributed to the chaos.

My statement about police presence was for other non "jump up" nights such as Tuesday when someone fired a gun near the crowd and nothing happened. On a normal night in Christiansted you will not see patrols after 9 or 10pm. This could be improved.

Bombi, I didn't realize there was a St. Croix Administrator. It seems that this person should be our point of contact (and should be elected IMO) for dealing with island specific problems. The lack of an accountable "local" or municipal government here is another one of the "deeper issues" I see here that need to be addressed to actually solve problems rather than bandaid them after the fact.

Sean


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onthespot
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July 12, 2011 5:25 pm  

The article posted stated that "officers were on scene within minutes, though you may not have recongnized them." Undercover cops are not much of a deterrent to crime. Maybe they had some other, more pressing investigation, requiring undercover work, they were working on that night. From the sounds of things, not a lot of spare officers to be posting everywhere at all hours.


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Lizard
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July 12, 2011 7:11 pm  

The bottom line is do you feel safe. After years on the USVI I no longer feel safe when out at night. Friends being shot and killed inside a restaurant, now young girls stabbing one another on a public boardwalk. I'm sick of shots being fired. I don't want to be in fear for myself and family members. Put Uniformed Police where the people are at night. If we don't have enough police, activate the USVI National Guard to patrol the Cities and streets. Enough is Enough.:-X


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East Ender
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NugBlazer
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July 14, 2011 5:01 pm  

This stabbing incident really emphasizes how inept many local parents are. Some of them are only parents in title.


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Ms Information
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July 15, 2011 12:24 am  

This stabbing incident really emphasizes how inept many local parents are. Some of them are only parents in title.

I think you have put your finger on the real problem. It is not about police response, it is about kids with no values or morals. Part of the problem is a breakdown of the family in the USVI (and elswhere) where young teenage girls are having babies without husbands and letting grandma or aunty try to raise the angry kids. While some of those girls who were arrested or hurt might have come from loving families, I would be willing to bet that most of them are from single parent homes, Some of the girls involved (15 and 16 years old) might already have gotten pregnant themselves. It is time to stop the breeding and get responsible.

I suppose this is not politically correct, but I'll bet it is true. The other part of the problem is that we live in a violent society. All we see are Violent films, TV and games that glorify killing. That problem is not just local it is nation wide.


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Linda J
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July 15, 2011 1:04 am  

Ms., I do agree that single moms have WAY more trouble raising kids that 2-parent families. I think many of the problems of society today stem from the breakdown of family life. But I do think these single mom can be loving parents. I feel really sorry for the boys/men without fathers. How can they model how fathers should, well, father when they've never experienced it? And this problem is certainly not limited to the USVI. It makes you wonder what the future holds for our society.


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JoeyBallgame
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July 15, 2011 1:56 am  

Society in the USA is in trouble. Now a days, kids are having kids and no one is doing anything to stop it.

Kids today have no manners and no respect for their fellow humans, I would hate to raise a kid in society as it is today.

One of the main problems, it is pretty much against the law to discipline your child the way we (I am 34) were disciplined as children.


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Bombi
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July 15, 2011 2:40 am  

Let's let it go. As I said i am acquainted with the victims father, another workplace associate called earlier to say that he is helping the father cast the lid for the vault and paint the tomb so he will be in around noon... It is a tragedy beyond belief and every parents nightmare............... may she rest in peace and the family begin to heal. And may it never happen again.


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