Crime in Saint Lucia
Crime in Saint Lucia is investigated by the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force.
Crime by type
Robbery is an issue in Saint Lucia. On December 14, 2015 at 2 p.m. an American couple was robbed by two men carrying a kitchen knife and a machete. The couple was walking on Micoud Hwy near Sandy Beach east of Vieux Fort heading back to the Coconut Bay Resort. The young men approached the couple, saw the wife had an iPhone, pulled out the knife and demanded her phone. When she hesitated, both men attacked the wife and yanked the phone from her and then nonchalantly walked down the beach. The couple was not physically injured and they filed a police report with the Vieux Fort police. However, they never heard from the police again and it is presumed that the perpetrators are still at large. In January 2014 a British couple was robbed on board their yacht while it was moored off St Lucia, with the husband being murdered. In 2013, 55 cruise ship passengers were robbed at gunpoint during daylight at the Botanical Gardens in Soufriere. No one was injured during the incident.
The Saint Lucia police have been accused, largely by prominent figures in the then opposition party (St. Lucia Labour Party), of keeping death lists and carrying out extrajudicial killings of suspected criminals in an attempt to make St Lucia more attractive to tourists. Alleged shootings by police took place in 2010 and 2011 during a security drive called Operation Restore Confidence, which was aimed at reducing violent crime and boosting tourism. According to an independent report, officers from the Royal St. Lucia Police Force staged a dozen killings of suspected criminals. The police then reported the killings as murders committed by unknown assailants, planting weapons at the scene. In August 2013 the US government suspended assistance to the Saint Lucia police in light of rumors of the extrajudicial killings.
In 2015 the Saint Lucia police stated that they were under-resourced, with not enough police officers to keep up with the crime case load.
- Global Study on Homicide. United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, 2013.
- "St Lucia: is it safe to visit?", Fred Mawer, The Telegraph, 20 January 2014.
- "Violent Crime Problem In St. Lucia - St. Lucia News From The Voice St. Lucia". St. Lucia News From The Voice St. Lucia. Retrieved 2016-02-15.
- "St. Lucia: Mass robbery of cruisers a 'rare incident'", Gene Sloan, USA Today, 15 April 2013.
- "St Lucia crime surge linked to gang activity - commissioner", Caribbean 360, 18 July 2014.
- "St. Lucia police kept death lists, killed suspected criminals to keep island tourist-friendly: report", Nick Allen, National Post, 11 March 2015.
- "Police Kept Busy At Weekend; Call For More Resources", Stan Bishop, The Voice St. Lucia, 14 April 2015.