Saint Kitts
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RSCNPF Evaluates the Practicality of a Gun Amnesty Programme in St. Kitts And Nevis

Basseterre, St. Kitts (SKNIS): Deputy Commissioner of Police, Cromwell Henry, said that the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force (RSCNPF) is evaluating the practicality of a gun amnesty programme as part of its efforts to address gun-related crimes in the Federation.

He said that there have been discussions on plans to have a gun amnesty programme.

“We have not definitively concluded on that, but it is a matter that is being discussed presently – whether we should do it or how it should be done and the benefits of such a programme,’ said Deputy Commissioner Henry on the July 19 Edition of Infocus.

A gun amnesty allows persons who have illegal firearms the opportunity to surrender their weapons to the Police without fear of prosecution and in some cases a reward is given.

Deputy Commissioner Henry said that firearm amnesties have been used globally as an operational tool to reduce high levels of armed violence resulting from the proliferation of firearms and ammunition. He added, however, that the police will be extremely careful in their decisions.

“We have seen in other jurisdictions where it was done, and the criminals used it to their advantage. They would bring in an old gun, get paid and then go and buy a better one. And so, we’ve seen where criminals have used such programmes to their benefit,” said the Deputy Commissioner of Police. “So, we have to carefully examine the pros and cons before we conclude whether or not that is something we would want to try.”

In 2019, a similar initiative took place when a total of 30 illegal firearms and 73 rounds of assorted ammunition were handed over to the police by individuals.