Seven burglaries and one attempted burglary have been reported to police in the Rum Point area of North Side district within a month, leading police commanders to reopen the district police station in response to community fears about crime.

An eighth burglary was reported in the North Side area – on Old Robin Road – between Oct. 6 and Nov. 3, according to the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service.

Five of the break-ins were reported by property managers or homeowners who had just arrived at their winter vacation properties ahead of the tourism high season. They had not been at the residences for some time and could not tell police exactly when the burglaries happened.

Generally, items such as flat-screen televisions, iPads and video game consoles were taken.

Several other burglaries occurred while residents who occupied the properties full-time were away at work during the day, police said. Jewelry and relatively small amounts of cash, as well as some electronic items, were taken in those incidents.

In response to the rash of recent burglary reports, police reopened the North Side Police station on Hutland Road over the weekend, and neighborhood police and traffic officers patrolled the district on Saturday and Sunday.

The police high command has decided to reopen the station full-time, starting Monday, Nov. 28.

Police clarified that one officer will staff the station between 8:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. Monday to Friday, performing a largely community policing-oriented role. However, the officer will respond to calls from the public just like any other RCIPS officer while on duty.

The North Side Police Station was a hive of activity over the past weekend, as local police sought to put the community at ease about a rash of recent burglaries.  Police Constables Lazarus Moraes and Jaclyn Ebanks [pictured here] prepare to ride out on bicycle patrol Saturday afternoon. Photo: Brent Fuller
The North Side Police Station was a hive of activity over the past weekend, as local police sought to put the community at ease about a rash of recent burglaries. Police Constables Lazarus Moraes and Jaclyn Ebanks [pictured here] prepare to ride out on bicycle patrol Saturday afternoon. Photo: Brent Fuller
North Side operations

Covert operations in the area also targeted burglary suspects, but no arrests were immediately reported as a result of those efforts over the weekend. During the police operations, 17 tickets were issued for traffic-related offenses.

Police Superintendent Robert Graham said he was glad to hear reports from his officers that North Side residents responded positively to the increased patrols.

“We want to assure them … that we are doing all we can to stop these break-ins and restore the sense of security that North Side is used to,” Mr. Graham said.

Inside the police station Saturday, Sgt. Davis Scott went through lists of addresses that had reported burglaries over the past month.

Sgt. Scott said residents in the area had expressed a number of concerns about the recent break-ins and want full-time police service in the district.

Police announced two years ago that a neighborhood policing officer was to be stationed and to reside at the substation, which is outfitted as a residence on one side and a police station on the other. However, that plan never came to fruition and it fell to a group of district residents to maintain the property this year when weeds started to overgrow the station fence.

Neighborhood policing officers Lazarus Moraes and Jaclyn Ebanks were pulled off their normal assignments in Bodden Town and George Town for bike patrols Saturday in the Rum Point Drive area in response to the break-ins.

“Riding through slowly on a bicycle, we might notice a bit more [than on a police car patrol],” Officer Moraes said. “If we see a broken window, or something suspicious where the residents are away, we’ll report it.”

Earlier crimes

According to various reports received by the Cayman Compass, more than a half-dozen crimes were alleged to have occurred in North Side district since late 2015 and into the early part of this year.

In one incident, a U.S. tourist claimed her family was targeted after being spotted at a local restaurant by a suspect or suspects who identified their rental vehicle.

In another case, from February, it is alleged that two tourists woke up to find a burglar in their room and chased the man out and around the parking lot of the complex where they were staying.

Those incidents, in addition to a burglary/home invasion in February on Rum Point Drive and a January incident in which an elderly visitor was punched in the face during a robbery, have left district residents and some longtime tourists worried.

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7 COMMENTS

  1. You can’t even go to dinner without worrying that you’re being targeted for a robbery. The police will never catch these creatures. The homeowners are left with the awful feeling of being violated. Let’s not forget the physical assaults. This is rampant here. My heart goes out to all the victims. You can’t stop it.

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  2. This is becoming increasingly more and more of a problem. I started building less than six months ago and have already been burglarized at my construction site on four different occasions first of which was only days after arriving and the most recent just this past weekend. Everything has been targeted TV’s, Power and hand tools, a wheel barrow to bags of cement even little things like a bottle of round-up and used pump sprayer. It’s to the point where I cannot sleep at night worried about what will be gone or damaged at the in the morning when I get to the site.

    I’ve unfortunately had to resort to driving and checking the site throughout the night myself just for peace of mind to fall asleep. It’s clear that things have drastically changed since I started visiting Cayman 15 years ago. It’s no longer a place where you can leave your doors open or your window cracked to get a cool breeze at night. The future looks more like this. Decorative security bars on windows as far as the eye can see, Gated Communities or six foot padlocked fences with barbed wire on top. Higher CUC bills because you have to run your AC even will it’s cool outside for fear of leaving your window cracked.

    Cayman is a beautiful place full of wonderful people and I wouldn’t change my mind about being here for a minute. However it does suck to see the same things I had to deal with in the US starting to happen more and more here. Just goes to show that a handful of people can ruin things for everyone.

    I did however notice the RCIPS Patrolling the area over the weekend while out on my 2 AM peace of mind ride I am also extremely happy to see the reopening of the local Police Dept. I’m thankful to them for that and hope that they are provided with whatever manpower and resources required so that they can whatever it takes to keep the area safe for everyone so people can sleep more peacefully in paradise.

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  3. Rodney, I am so sorry for you.

    Seems this is happening all over.

    Just on Saturday night we parked my wife’s Toyota at Royal Palms to enjoy the Rotary concert there and returned to find one of her hub-caps missing, presumed stolen.

    Not numb or fear-ridden just annoyed that some people will stoop so low (literally in this case) as to steal a hubcap at a charity concert.

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  4. I must agree that having the station open only during the day is useless since all the break in’s happen at night.. It would have a much larger impact if they were closed during the day and open over night so the cops can keep an eye on the area while people are sleeping which is usually when the thieves are lurking around.

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