Cops nab suspected serial killers - Major crime statistics down
Police Commissioner Major General Antony Anderson yesterday announced that two men who police say are serial killers were recently apprehended and charged, highlighting a positive third quarter for the constabulary.
"The period saw some significant breakthroughs by investigators with two serial killers arrested and charged. In St James, 25 year-old Ronoldo Ricketts was linked to at least five cases of murder of homeless persons as well as other cases of rape, abduction and possibly kidnapping," Anderson disclosed. Ricketts, who was arrested in August after attempting to abduct a woman, provided a statement to detectives, admitting his involvement in several Montego Bay murders. He was formally charged on September 7. In St Ann, another suspected serial killer from Buckfield, St Mary, was also nabbed.
"Forty-five-year-old Richard Belnavis has been charged for three counts of murder so far and some others are pending," the commissioner said. The proximity of Montego Bay to Ocho Rios, where Belnavis is believed to have targeted his victims, raised questions about a potential connection between the two men. But investigators have determined that there is no correlation in their activities. However, lawmen continue to probe related matters to ascertain any potential links to unsolved cases.
Anderson also presented statistics for major crimes during the quarter, which concluded on September 30. Major crimes saw a 13 per cent decrease compared to the corresponding period last year. This reduction includes a 12 per cent drop in murders, or 141 fewer victims. Shooting incidents have decreased by nine per cent, while rapes and robberies decreased by 18 and 17 per cent, respectively. Break-ins are down by 13 per cent.
Notably, Anderson highlighted that interpersonal violence accounted for 21 per cent of total homicides, while gang-related murders made up a significant 66 per cent of the cases, emphasising the importance of addressing gang-related crime in the ongoing efforts to maintain public safety.