Thursday, May 5 – With 26 of the recorded 47 murders solved, the new Commissioner of Police Michael Matthews says he would be hard pressed to find a higher performing Police service anywhere.
These figures he shared during a press conference on Tuesday to meet and greet members of the media.
“The number of unsolved murders is not 35 or even 30 as many out there would have you believe. Of the 47 murders committed between 2001 and 2016, 26 of those have been solved. So we actually have 21 unsolved murders. 55 percent of the murders committed have been solved. That is an impressive detection rate, he said.
“The force has a 48 percent detection rate which means almost half the crime committed in these islands is being detection. This is a very high performing constabulary and I am qualified to say that after working some 34 years in various jurisdictions around the world,” Matthews said.
He further noted that a reduction of 14% in crime between 2014 and 2015 is also a significant feat. “For those who may say the numbers were cooked, just speak to the Superintendent of Prisons about his occupancy rate and you will have to change your mind,” he said.
He noted that the jurisdiction is small and the effect of any level in crime is immediate and impacting, however the truth is the Force is actually doing a good job at detecting crime.
In answer to a question from a member of media on his reasons for taking up the post, the new Commissioner noted that his strength is in developing programmes for long-term capacity and capability building and he wants to bring that to the police service.
“My challenge here will be to get this Police service what they need to perform even better. There is something positive happening here. There are a lot of dedicated officers who are committed to giving their best at keeping this Territory safe. It is up to me to find a way to give them the needed support in terms of resources, equipment and training to do even a better job,” the new Commissioner noted.
Among his past accomplishments, Mr. Matthews developed and implemented sustainable programmes which enabled the establishment of a comprehensive recruitment plan for officers while at the same time maintaining a high level of trust and confidence from members of the local community in Cyprus.