Though murders are up across the country by roughly five percent, some parishes are way out front with sharply increased percentages over last year.
The latest police data provides figures up to Saturday, April 21, and those are compared with murders for the same period last year. (Throughout this story that is the period for comparison).
Portland is recording the highest increase, of four hundred percent but the parish, with a small population, is relatively peaceful. In other words, the percentage is large but the aggregate is low; five people have been murdered there this year compared to one last year, for the same period to April 21.
St Mary, a neighbouring parish to Portland is also recording a high percentage murder increase of 114%, with 15 killed so far this year compared to seven for the same period last year.
St Thomas, on the other side of Portland, is also recording large percentage increase moving from seven murders in 2017 to 13 for the same period this year, an 85% increase in murder.
St Elizabeth and Trelawny are each showing a high average increase of 75% with murders moving from four last years to seven this year, for the comparative period.
The parishes that continue to have large aggregate numbers of murders are Westmoreland 47, up 9.3% on last year’s figures, and Clarendon 44, up from 39 (or 12.8%) last year.
The Kingston/St Andrew/St Catherine metropolitan region continues to have a high number of murders recording 243 compared to 169 last years, an increase of more than 43%.