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St. Thomas Stepped Up Police Patrols Nets Two Arrests and Confiscates Firearm; Curfew and Drag Racing Addressed

December 20, 2010
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Stepped Up Patrol initiatives on St. Thomas this weekend confiscated a firearm, drugs, made two arrests, enforced curfew laws and tackled street racing on the public highways.


While thousands attended the annual Miracle on Main Street Saturday, December 18, police directed traffic and conducted vehicle and foot patrols to ensure the safety of residents and visitors.

Following event, officers began a curfew initiative at Caribbean Rock nightclub in Havensight and ordered nearly 200 minors to leave the nightclub. According to VI Law minors are barred from entering an establishment that serves alcohol. Police held at least 20 of those minors in custody, including a 9-year-old, later releasing them into to their parents’ custody.


St. Thomas/Water Island Deputy Police Chief Dwayne DeGraff sent a clear message to the children and their parents. “If in the future, those children are found in violation of the curfew, their parents will be arrested,” he said.


 Deputy Chief DeGraff said in times like these, especially the holiday season, anything can happen, and parents need to be more responsible for their children. “You never know what dangers or criminal activities may be lurking in certain areas,” he said, “please help us to help you preserve our most precious asset: the young people of our Virgin Islands.”


While officers were clearing out the nightclub and surrounding area, they acted on a tip of a suspect carrying a firearm. That suspect, later identified as 18-year-old Roland Murrell Jr., was arrested around 1:50 a.m. and charged with Possession of an Unlicensed Firearm. Bail was set at $25,000.


Early Sunday morning, DUI traffic enforcement check points stopped approximately 250 vehicles. Vehicles found with various traffic violations were either ticketed or towed. Spencer Sutton, 51, was arrested around 12:10 a.m. Sunday, December 19 on the Weymouth Rhymer Highway and charged with Driving Under the Influence.  His bail was set at $300.


Officers aggressively patrolled several neighborhoods and confiscated marijuana plants, packaged marijuana, scales and other drug paraphernalia.


Officers also tackled drag racing issues in Estate Contact by preventing a crowd of drivers from racing in the area.


Police converged near Mandela Circle around 4:00 a.m. When Club Jaguars closed, shots were heard fired from the Paul M. Pearson Gardens housing community. Officers inspected the area and found 13 spent casings on the ground and a firearm hidden in a meter box. The casings and firearm were of different calibers, police said, and they continue to investigate this matter.


Deputy Chief DeGraff said the Stepped Up Patrol will continue on St. Thomas through the New Year.

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