Minister gives assurance on CCTV cameras near site of murder – The Royal Gazette | Bermuda News, Business, Sports, Events, & Community

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Minister gives assurance on CCTV cameras near site of murder

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Public Safety Minister Michael Dunkley assured the public that CCTV cameras in the St Monica's Road area are monitored and maintained, following concerns voiced by Opposition MPs.

Mr Dunkley said: “There are occasional outages due to transmission failure and other factors. Those outages should be addressed swiftly by the service provider and service restored promptly.

“The investigation into the senseless murder of Jonathan Dill is active and any comment on the specifics of the cameras in that area could prejudice the extremely hard work being done presently by the police. I can say however, that I have been advised that there is CCTV coverage in the area in question and an examination of the footage is forming part of the ongoing investigation.”

Mr Dunkley also said he was “somewhat surprised” by the Opposition statement, noting that Pembroke MP Michael Weeks had last week told this newspaper that, to the best of his knowledge, the cameras were operational in the area.

The Minister's response came after Shadow Public Safety Minister Michael Scott yesterday joined Mr Weeks and Walter Roban in calling on the Government to assure the public the cameras were working as residents had expressed concern.

Mr Scott said: “When we were in Government, they were in operation. When you have lightning strikes or bad weather, these sensitive electronics will go down, but it is the Government's responsibility to monitor what is going on and ensure there are not down.”

Mr Roban said both he and Mr Weeks had worked hard to improve lighting and install CCTV cameras in the St Monica's Road area, and the work had provided the residents a degree of comfort.

However he said the fatal shooting of 30-year-old Mr Dill last week and the fatal stabbing of 22-year-old Steven Jireh Iris last month had shocked the community. While a man has been charged in connection to the murder of Mr Iris, he had not heard if anyone has been arrested in connection to the murder of Mr Dill.

“If cameras were operating in the area, we hope that has aided in someone being identified,” he said. “But if they weren't, clearly that's a deficit.

“We do hope that our concerns are taken on seriously so not only can we take the message from the people, but so they hear from the Government what the state of affairs is and the Government can assure them of the actual situation.”

Mr Weeks said reports that the cameras may not have been functioning at the time of Mr Dill's shooting filled him with anger.

“After making numerous inquiries, we still have not received a straight answer as to whether these cameras are working or not,” he said. “The war on crime and gun violence only works if the community, the police, the courts and the government are all doing their part. This is unacceptable.”

Mr Weeks also urged residents to speak out if they have any information on the recent murders, saying: “If you know something, if you see something, you must all speak up and say something in this crisis that we are facing because we are all in this together.”

Anyone with information about the killings is urged to contact the Serious Crime Unit on 247-1739 or the independent and confidential Crime Stoppers' hotline on 800-8477.

PLP MPs Walter Roban, Michael Scott and Michael Weeks questioned whether CCTV cameras in the St Monica's Mission area are working. (photo by Glenn Tucker)

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Published September 10, 2013 at 9:00 am (Updated September 10, 2013 at 11:52 am)

Minister gives assurance on CCTV cameras near site of murder

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