Police to streamline crime reporting in far-flung beach spots

May 23, 2016
1 Comments

Many visitors looking to get away from it all are attracted to Costa Rica’s remote destinations. That same quality offering quiet and relaxation, however, can be a disadvantage when it comes to reporting a crime. But a new pilot program is trying to streamline this process by letting local National Police officers file criminal complaints so victims don’t have to travel out of their way.

Starting this June, police in Puerto Viejo, Cocles, Cahuita, Flamingo, Dominical, Nosara, Sámara, Playas del Coco and Tamarindo will start taking criminal complaints, according to Public Security Ministry spokesman José Vargas.

Between May 20 and 24, 75 police officers were trained at the National Police Academy to take victim statements and file complaints via email to the nearest Judicial Investigation Police (OIJ) delegation. The job of investigating crimes will remain with the OIJ.

Generally speaking, police in Costa Rica are tasked with preventing crime and OIJ officers are in charge of investigating crimes committed. This means that while police might be the first on the scene if a smartphone is stolen, for example, the victim still has to file a compliant with OIJ in order to file charges.

Under the current system, victims in far-flung places like the Pacific beach town of Nosara would need to drive nearly 60 kilometers to Nicoya to report a crime. Some, especially foreign tourists, don’t know that they need to file a separate complaint with OIJ beyond their initial encounter with police. Others decide it’s too much hassle.

Vargas said other communities could be incorporated if the project goes well.

You may be interested

Costa Rican government and unions willing to start a dialogue to end the strike
News
931 views
News
931 views

Costa Rican government and unions willing to start a dialogue to end the strike

AFP - September 18, 2018

President Carlos Alvarado told NC Once news that the government is set to talk with unions and announced that the…

Ex-president Cristina Kirchner charged in Argentina corruption scandal
Argentina
599 views
Argentina
599 views

Ex-president Cristina Kirchner charged in Argentina corruption scandal

AFP / Liliana Samuel - September 18, 2018

Argentina's ex-president Cristina Kirchner was charged with corruption on Monday as a judge asked that her legislative immunity be lifted…

Free press accuses Daniel Ortega’s dictatorship of wanting to impose a reign of silence
La Prensa
1032 views
La Prensa
1032 views

Free press accuses Daniel Ortega’s dictatorship of wanting to impose a reign of silence

La Prensa / Leonor Álvarez - September 17, 2018

On Saturday, Sept. 8, while reporters around the world were celebrating the International Day of Solidarity of Journalists, reporters, and…