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Police Force needs restructuring

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23.MAY.08

Editor: Crime in this country seems to be growing at an alarming rate. Before Dr. Gonsalves became Prime Minister, he used to tell us that former Prime Minister Sir James Mitchell and former Commissioner of Police Randolph Toussaint were responsible for the crime situation in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.{{more}}

Now that Dr. Gonsalves is Prime Minister, I am wondering if he thinks that we should hold him responsible for the escalation in crime. We were told by Dr. Gonsalves and his Unity Labour Party (ULP) that they will be tough on crime and the causes of crime. They introduced the Rapid Response Unit (RRU) (Black Squad), and a special crime unit within the Criminal Investigation Department (CID). While all these initiatives are good, were these ideas Prime Minister Gonsalves’s or Commissioner Miller’s? One has to believe that these ideas are from Dr. Gonsalves. Remember, he is in charge!

When I was told that Mr Miller was going to be appointed Commissioner of Police, I thought that we would have seen a difference, but that is yet to happen. I am not impressed with what I see and hear about Mr. Miller as Commissioner. If I had my way, I would have transferred him.

Time and time again, we hear our Police Officers saying if they get more support from the public, they will solve more crime and deal with persons who are in involved in criminal activities. I find that statement from the police quite strange. Some time ago, I assisted a police officer with some information. A few days later, the person who the information was about came back and told me who gave the police the information. I told Superintendent Elvis Browne. I also wrote to Commissioner Miller to let him know that I felt betrayed. They did nothing about my complaint. Imagine these are the same police officers who say we should assist them. Where is the confidentiality in the police force? No wonder persons think that Mr. Miller should be removed as Commissioner.

Former Commissioner of Police Randolph Toussaint once said that the police come from the society and if the head is bad, the whole body is bad. Let’s ask ourselves these questions: Do we feel safe with the police of our state? Are the police really fighting crime the best way? Do the public feel confident in our police force? I am wondering if Mr. Miller asks himself questions about the functioning of the police force. I am hoping Prime Minister Gonsalves who is in charge of the police force takes a good look at the functioning and tells me if he is satisfied. There is need for some changes to be made in the functioning of the police force. Dr. Gonsalves, you will be held responsible for the crime situation in this country because Sir James and Toussaint were responsible, isn’t that so?

Kingsley DeFreitas

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