Bahamas Prepares to Deploy Officers to Turks and Caicos as Gang War Rocks the British Territory
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Gang war in Turks and Caicos is overwhelming its police force and Premier Charles Misick is calling on the Bahamas government to help his country fight the scourge of crime and violence in its once peaceful British territory.
Misick in an address said that he asked Prime Minister Philip Davis and the Commissioner of Police Clayton Fernander to augment the Royal Turks and Caicos Island Police Force as violent crime spirals out of control, and authorities are making plans to do so.
TCI faces a tremendous increase in crime since April. Its latest crime wave involved the killing of a US tourist on Sunday, who along with a local was shot “indiscriminately” when armed criminals shot into a vehicle carrying local staff and tourists to their resort after an excursion.
The local also died while the other tourist sustained injuries. When officers responded, they came under fire and an officer was shot during the ordeal. But officers managed to shoot one of the suspects who was found dead sometime later.
The officer remains in serious condition.
Bullets from the suspects’ guns struck the windshield of the police vehicle and deflated the tires.
TCI Police Chief Trevor Botting who later took to social media to instill calm on the island of more than 38,000 people, said the incident “was targeted and carried out by armed gang members who act without conscience, who have no regard for life and who are hell-bent on causing indiscriminate harm and misery across the TCI.
“This violence is linked to drug supply and is fueled by revenge, turf wars and retribution,” he said.
CSJ Report understands the Bahamas is preparing to send 23 officers for approximately one month to bring stability to TCI and arrest the “now emboldened gang trying to remove who they believe are the local drug and arms smuggling competition.”
Governor Nigel Dankin said the ball of confusion on the island began when police shot dead a Jamaican gang leader while resisting arrest, several months ago. Later, the leader of a Haitian gang was killed by a member of his gang.
“The vacuum and confusion this created, allowed a predominantly Jamaican gang, with a relatively small footprint here, to reinforce from Jamaica. They had already been seeking to kill one of their local rivals…following his attempt to steal from them,” Dankin said.
It’s been reported that the local gangs are fighting back and using military-grade high-velocity weaponry.
Misick also requested help from Jamaica and Barbados for police reinforcement as the United Kingdom send a Chief Superintendent and Inspector to form an anti-gun unit. Twenty-three officers to form the unit will arrive in the coming months.
Misick is also petitioning the US Department of Homeland Security to police the passage between TCI and Haiti to prevent illegal entry.