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Why Are Gunshots Commonplace?


Dear Source:
I have lived in St. Thomas for one year. I moved here from a big city in order to experience the beautiful beaches and what I thought would be a more relaxing way of life. Unfortunately, it is very difficult for me to relax in my home when I frequently hear gunshots. I live just up the hill from the Mafolie Hotel. Several times a month, if not every week, I hear gunshots. Most of the time it is after midnight but I have noticed them as early as 8 p.m. More recently these aren’t just people shooting up into the air but rather a series of 8-10 gunshots three or four times in a row.
Never once have I heard police sirens after the gunshots. From several people I have spoken with they claim that’s just the way it is. Why is it that St. Thomas has such a low standard of safety that people just accept the fact that gunshots are a normal occurrence?
I would like to invite friends to visit but I can’t in good conscious invite someone close to me with the chance that we will hear gunshots during their visit. That is a horrible impression for a visitor to have of a gorgeous island. In a similar situation, I can’t imagine how a hotel explains the gunshots to their guests.
What is being done about crime on this island? From my vantage point it is very little.
Lizzy Pietri, St. Thomas


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