martes, 11 de febrero de 2014

Murders in El Salvador steady this year, "no spike" says police chief

The Police chief of El Salvador insisted on 10 February that there was no "spike" in murders nationwide in spite of at least 22 killings being reported for the 7-9 February weekend, because he said the country had many fewer killings than before a gangs ceasefire that began in March 2012, El Salvador's El Mundo reported. Rigoberto Pleités was reported as comparing 52 murders committed nationwide from 1 to 9 February to 70 killings for the same days in 2013. This he said translated into a daily killing rate of 5.8, so "when you speak of a spike one hopes to reach 14 or 15 homicides [a day] as a steady tendency, which we do not have. What we have are days like" the preceding Saturday and Sunday, "which gave us together 22 homicides." The National Police murder count for the period 1 January to 9 February was 268, compared to 266 for the same days in 2013, according to the daily. The website elsalvador.com put the figure at 289, observing it was 23 more killings than for the same days in 2013. The discrepancy may have been a reporting error, though it was not immediately clear. Mr Pleités said the country's average daily killing rate in the preceding seven months had not exceeded 8.5, compared to the double-digit figures typical of the period before March 2012. Elsalvador.com expressed the idea of a "spike" in killings after the 2 February general elections, observing that 15 people were killed in the country on Sunday 9 February, and eight the day before - meaning 23 killings in two days.

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