Senior Superintendent of Police – Central Division, Michael Pierre, said data gathered by the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service shows that there is no discrimination when it comes to victims of crime.
He made the comment on Thursday, after Pundit Satyanand Maharaj stated the day prior, that people of East Indian descent are specific targets for criminals.
During a media conference in San Juan on Wednesday, Maharaj claimed that urban youth along the East-West corridor are targeting people of East Indian descent in Aranguez and across the country.
Sr Supt Pierre said: “I think that the would-be criminals or opportunistic criminals target anyone who makes themselves a soft target, so it is not gender specific or ethnic specific.”
Pierre said while the TTPS’ Crime and Problem Analysis Branch disaggregates police reports based on ethnicity, he’s seen nothing to back up the pundit’s statement.
“But what I would tell you also is that we are a multi-ethnic and multi-religious society, and when you take different regions into consideration you may have more of one ethnic group living in one particular area, so to just zone it in one way, you have to be more explicit in terms of how you evaluate.”
Sr Supt Pierre said he does not see any one racial group being preyed on in the district. Nor does he see any group of people making themselves so-called softer targets compared to other racial groups.
“For example, a person walking on the street, walking with a cell phone, focusing on the cell phone rather than their surroundings, then you won’t be aware of that person who is approaching you to snatch your phone. For home invasions, in some instances people leave their door wide open while they are at home and in terms of lighting systems, if you’re looking at protecting the environment, one would tend to have it well-lit and even with camera systems or neighbourhood watch groups and when these things don’t exist, those persons present themselves as soft targets.”