ISSN: 1522-4821

Journal international sur la santé mentale d'urgence et la résilience humaine

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Homicide, Rape and Carnal Abuse in Jamaica, 1970-2013: The New Health Pandemics

Paul Andrew Bourne, Angela Hudson-Davis, Charlene Sharpe-Pryce, Cynthia Francis, Ikhalfani Solan and Shirley Nelson

Introduction: The issue of rape and carnal abuse is a major crime usually determined and studied by forensic science. The aforementioned, though not yet established empirically in Jamaica, along with homicide, is the basis for this study.

Objective: This paper evaluates homicide, rape and carnal abuse, along with changes in those figures, over a four decade period.

Materials and methods: Forty-four years of panel data were used for this study. Data were recorded, stored and retrieved using the Statistical Packages for the Social Sciences for Windows, Version 21.0.

Results: Over the studied period (i.e., 44 years), on average, 778 ± 465 people (95% CI: 626-931) were murdered in Jamaica compared to 1,062 ± 333 (95%CI: 952-1,171) who were raped or carnally abused. For the same period, on average, 2.1 ± 1.3 (95%CI: 1.7-2.6) people were murdered on a daily basis and 2.9 ± 0.9 (95%CI: 2.6-3.2) were raped or carnally abused. In the 1970s, on average, 209 ± 83 people were murdered i n Jamaica, which rose by 653.4% in the decade of 2000 (to 2,004 ± 3.2; 95%CI: 2,002-2,007). Comparatively, on average, absolute rape and carnal abuse for the decade of the 1970s and 2000s rose by 118.4%. 2.1 ± 1.3 (95%CI: 1.7-2.6) people were murdered on a daily basis and 2.9 ± 0.9 (95%CI: 2.6-3.2) were raped or carnally abused.

Conclusion: The rape and carnal abuse phenomenon cannot be taken lightly anymore as the psychopathology to the matter is both current and long lasting. Undoubtedly, rape and carnal abuse are critical health matters that should not be studied only by criminologists as there are related mental health matters and other psychopathological aspects to these phenomena.