The Royal Cayman Islands Police Service (RCIPS) reported that during the weekend of March 25-27, officers responded to multiple incidents where persons brandished machetes during altercations or confrontations, three of which resulted in persons being injured.
According to the RCIPS, the first incident occurred shortly before 8:50pm on Friday, March 25 when officers responded to a report on Shedden Road, George Town, just west of North Sound Road, where a man who was allegedly intoxicated brandished a machete and was allegedly acting aggressively after having been denied entry to a bar at the location. Officers attended the location and conducted a search of a vehicle driven by the man, during which a machete, along with a package containing suspected ganja, were recovered. Officers subsequently arrested the man, age 31 of Bodden Town. During the arrest the man also allegedly made threats against the officers.
He has now been formally charged with Threats to Kill, Carrying a Restricted Weapon, Possession of Ganja, Consumption of Ganja, and Disorderly Conduct. He appeared in court on March 28.
In relation to the second incident, police said that, at about 5:45pm on Saturday, March 26, officers responded to a report of an altercation between two men known to each other, involving a machete, at an address in Ella Ray Gardens, George Town. Officers attended the location and observed a man with a large laceration to the head. Emergency services attended the location and transported the man to the Cayman Islands Hospital for treatment for what appears to be a serious but non-life-threatening injury.
Officers conducted a search of the area and located a second man nearby, who was carrying a machete and a knife. Officers arrested the man, age 37 of George Town, on suspicion of wounding. A search of the man was then conducted, during which officers recovered another knife from his person.
He remains in custody as investigations continue.
The third incident took place shortly after midnight on Sunday morning, March 27 when officers responded to a report of an altercation involving weapons outside a bar on Shedden Road, George Town, just west of North Sound Road. Officers attended the location and observed two men, one of whom had sustained a head injury. It was reported that the men had been at the location when they were approached aggressively by two other men, one of whom allegedly brandished a machete. An altercation ensued and the man with the machete allegedly struck one of the first two men in the head, before leaving the location by vehicle. Emergency services attended the location and transported the injured man to the Cayman Islands Hospital for treatment for a laceration to the head.
Finally, police reported that, shortly after 3:45am on Sunday, March 27, officers responded to a report of an assault at an address on Shamrock Road. It was reported that a group of people were gathered at the location, when one man approached another with a machete and allegedly struck at him causing a cut to his hand. The man with the machete then left the location. Officers later located the accused in the incident, who was warned for intended prosecution for assault ABH.
“Recently we have noted an increase in the level of aggression, and the use of weapons, by members of the public when dealing with disputes with other persons,” said Deputy Commissioner of Police Kurt Walton.
More often than not, this means that these disputes escalate quickly and result in persons receiving serious, sometimes life-threatening, injuries. The penalty for wounding or causing grievous bodily harm to another person ranges from seven years imprisonment to life. So think twice before you ruin your life or someone else’s over a dispute that could be resolved without resorting to violence.
In relation to these incidents, members of the public are reminded that section 81 of the Penal Code states that it is an offense to carry any weapon in public, particularly at night, “without any lawful excuse (the proof of which excuse shall be on such a person).” If found in contravention, a person is liable on conviction to a fine of $5,000 and imprisonment for four years.