Royston Jones Jr.
Guardian Staff Reporter
Published: Jun 26, 2012
Numerous rapes that have occurred during early morning home invasions throughout some suburbs of New Providence over the last few weeks, have led police to intensify the hunt for several men who might be serial rapists.
The most recent incident involved a woman who was sexually assaulted in a suburb of western New Providence around 5 a.m. yesterday, according to Assistant Commissioner of Police Anthony Ferguson.
He also said four of the alleged victims, who live in eastern New Providence, have reported sexual assaults over the past few weeks, leading police to increase patrols in undisclosed areas.
An additional four alleged rapes occurred in western New Providence in recent months, according to Ferguson.
He said that police have received reports of one or two men breaking into homes in quiet communities and holding residents at gunpoint between 2 a.m and 6 a.m.
He said some of the home invasions that have recently been reported begin with men stealing cash and jewelry and escalate to residents being held at gunpoint and women being sexually assaulted.
According to sources close to the matter, some of the rapes are connected.
When asked, Ferguson said police were looking into that possibility.
“We are working through this and we are doing a number of things to analyze what is actually going on,” Ferguson said.
“We believe we will make some inroads in this and find the persons responsible. But the police have been active in respect to these investigations.”
Killarney MP and Free National Movement (FNM) Leader Dr. Hubert Minnis yesterday sent an email blast to residents of his constituency warning women to travel in pairs, as there were reports of a “rapist-robber” targetting women in the area.
“There were reports of a young lady being sexually assaulted and a male being gun-butted,” Minnis said.
“Please pray for the protection of yourselves and those around you. Please do not take this warning lightly.”
Last Thursday, police shot and killed two men, and arrested two others during a high-speed chase in eastern New Providence.
At the time, Ferguson said police were conducting a special operation. He revealed yesterday that police officers were searching for an alleged rapist in the area around 2 a.m., after a woman reported a rape earlier that morning.
Ferguson also encouraged members of the public to be extra cautious as they move about, especially after dark.
“Be alert as to who might be following you while you are traveling home,” he said.
“If you see anyone following you for any length of time, do not pull up in your yard. Go to the nearest police station and report to the police that ‘I believe I am being followed’, and the police will be more than happy to see that the area is checked and that you safely get into your home and the area is patrolled.”