The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL -

Speak Out St. Lu­cia (SOS), an or­ga­ni­za­tion which was launched here on Mon­day March 14, has ex­pressed con­cern about re­cent state­ments com­ing from the prime min­is­ter of Saint Lu­cia on the is­sue of rape.

The or­ga­ni­za­tion seeks to press for a sex of­fend­ers registry and for jus­tice for vic­tims of rape and sex­ual abuse, among other things.

Ac­cord­ing to a press re­lease from SOS, Prime Min­is­ter Dr. Kenny D. An­thony made a state­ment on March 10 to com­mem­o­rate In­ter­na­tional Women’s Day, say­ing there are ‘se­rial rapists’ on the is­land.

“This is not the first time the Prime Min­is­ter has made this state­ment,” the re­lease says, adding, “In Novem­ber 2015, a few days af­ter a 97-year-old woman was raped in Mon Re­pos, he said, ‘We have se­rial rapists at large.’ ”

Ac­cord­ing to SOS, the log­i­cal ques­tions that should be asked fol­low­ing the Prime Min­is­ter’s rev­e­la­tion are: • Based on what in­for­ma­tion did the Prime Min­is­ter come to the con­clu­sion that there are se­rial rapists? • Is this the con­clu­sion of law en­force­ment per­son­nel or is it solely the Prime Min­is­ter’s es­ti­ma­tion?

For the Prime Min­is­ter to have ar­rived at such a con­clu­sion, the or­ga­ni­za­tion says, would sug­gest that there are se­rial rapists on the loose. It main­tains that this also sug­gests that a de­scrip­tion of the rapists has been made by mul­ti­ple vic­tims in or­der to con­vince the Prime Min­is­ter that the same per­sons have com­mit­ted th­ese rapes, or ev­i­dence has been col­lected from mul­ti­ple rapes which point to the same in­di­vid­u­als.

“If this in­for­ma­tion has been avail­able to the au­thor­i­ties and the Prime Min­is­ter since, at least, Novem­ber 2015, wouldn’t it be pru­dent to in­form the peo­ple of Saint Lu­cia with this in­for­ma­tion?” SOS asks.

Fur­ther, do th­ese rapists strike in the north of the is­land? Do they pre­fer coun­try­side vic­tims? Are they con­cen­trated in Mon Re­pos, or Vieux Fort, Soufriere, etc.? Is there a de­scrip­tion of the fea­tures of th­ese rapists? Do th­ese rapists tar­get a spe­cific type of vic­tim? Long hair, slim, tall, old, young, etc.? Do th­ese se­rial rapists strike dur­ing a cer­tain time of day? Do they pre­fer out­door or in-home at­tacks?

All of this in­for­ma­tion is what would help the pub­lic take more ap­pro­pri­ate mea­sures to safe­guard them­selves, the or­ga­ni­za­tion says. The ques­tion re­mains: Have more pa­trols or other de­ploy­ments of po­lice per­son­nel been made to ap­pre­hend th­ese se­rial rapists?

Speak Out St. Lu­cia is pleased with the Prime Min­is­ter’s state­ment: “We do need a mech­a­nism to al­low sex of­fend­ers to be named and [for] peo­ple to have a sense of who th­ese of­fend­ers are . . .” and his com­ment: “There is too much tol­er­ance par­tic­u­larly in our homes and so­ci­ety for sex­ual of­fences.”

Not­with­stand­ing, Speak Out St. Lu­cia re­mains con­cerned about the rea­sons no de­tailed in­for­ma­tion has been given to the pub­lic re­gard­ing th­ese se­rial rapists.

Nor­bert Wil­liams, Head of SOS, speak­ing to the me­dia on Mon­day.

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