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Caines: brutal crimes believed to be linked

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A string of brutal crimes across the island are believed to be linked, it was revealed yesterday.

Wayne Caines, the Minister of National Security, warned that police would use “the force necessary” to tackle trouble and safeguard the public.

He said: “The Bermuda Police Service continue to investigate the recent incidents of violence, including the murder of 22-year-old Joshua Rowse.

“Please note that four men believed to be involved in the incident were arrested and are now on police bail.

“Inquiries continue and the Bermuda Police Service continues to provide support to the family of Mr Rowse.

“It is now believed that all recent incidents, including the murder of Mr Rowse and the attack on the female with a machete, are all connected.

“There have been further arrests, but inquiries continue.”

Mr Rowse was the victim of what police said was a “brutal knife attack” outside the Rubis petrol station on South Road, Warwick, on June 14.

Kenneita Wade, 33, was left fighting for her life after a machete attack in the same parish five days later.

Her sister Kennae, 24, told The Royal Gazette that the mother of two sustained “life-changing injuries” after a home invasion in the Cedar Hill area last Friday.

A group of men, said by police to be armed with at least one machete, burst on to the property just before 11pm while friends and family socialised in the yard.

Mr Caines said targeted patrols would be carried out in Warwick over the next few days to “reassure the public and to respond quickly to any incidents”.

He added: “Intelligence is being used to deter and prevent future gang retaliation.”

The minister said later: “There has been an uptick in violence and the people in Bermuda are concerned.”

He added that a “robust plan” had been drawn up to tackle antisocial behaviour and that a meeting was held on Wednesday with Leroy Bean, the gang violence reduction co-ordinator, and his team.

Mr Caines vowed: “We will not, as a country, descend into mayhem.”

He added: “While we do not want the police to be heavy-handed, we will meet this with the force necessary to protect the citizens of this country.

“We will not have the people in Warwick from Khyber Pass and Cedar Hill living in fear.”

Commissioner of Police Stephen Corbishley said: “I am extremely grateful to the local community who have provided us really valuable information because they will not tolerate this kind of behaviour.

“There's a lot of targeted activity and I've said many times that the public will only see a part of what the police do, so there's a lot of intelligence work in regards to targeting those that present most risk.

“Indeed, in regard to the cases that have taken place recently, the one thing that should reassure the community is that they are interconnected.

“These aren't random attacks on people — these are between parties that know each other and we have made numerous arrests to bring them into custody and control the situation.

“But equally we can't be complacent.”

Mr Corbishley warned a “zero-tolerance” approach would be taken to “anybody that misbehaves or threatens violence”.

He added that a shooting in St George's earlier this month may be linked to the Warwick incidents.

Mr Corbishley said: “I don't want to go specifically into the investigations, per se, because they're ongoing, and we have parties arrested for all the incidents.

“But we do believe there's a connectivity throughout all matters that have taken place over the past couple of weeks.”

Other violent incidents this month included large-scale clashes at the Heron Bay Plaza shopping centre, Chaplin Bay in Warwick and John Smith's Bay.

Mr Corbishley added that the announcement last week of a $50,000 reward for information that would lead police to the location of missing young mother Chavelle Dillon-Burgess had not yielded any results yet.

He said: “There has been zero contact, but we made it specific that we want to hear from a person or persons who have direct knowledge as to where Chavelle is so we can find her on behalf of her family.

“We are still awaiting to have a call and I appeal to anybody who does know any information to contact the two numbers published as soon as possible.”

Anyone with information that could lead to finding Chavelle Dillon-Burgess can contact police on 717-0854 or 717-0864

Robust plan: Wayne Caines, the Minister of National Security (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
Stephen Corbishley, the Commissioner of Police (File photograph by Blaire Simmons)

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Published June 26, 2020 at 9:00 am (Updated June 26, 2020 at 8:19 am)

Caines: brutal crimes believed to be linked

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