COMMISSIONER AND GOVERNOR ADDRESS VIDEO OF POLICE INCIDENT AT BLOWING POINT

anguillian
By anguillian October 17, 2016 11:55

 

 

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Commissioner of Police Mr. Paul Morrison

The Commissioner of Police, Mr. Paul Morrison, and the Governor, Ms. Christina Scott, were made aware for the first time on the morning of 11 October 2016 of a video showing a disturbing incident involving police officers filmed at Blowing Point. An anonymous statement has also been released making a number of defamatory and inaccurate statements.

In light of the seriousness of the allegations, and the ongoing attempts to undermine public confidence in the police, the Commissioner of Police has issued the following statement:

“I am extremely concerned about the content in the video clip being circulated this morning showing an incident about which I was previously wholly unaware. Immediate investigations have revealed that this incident occurred on 11 August 2014 – over a year before I was appointed Commissioner of Police. In light of the seriousness of the images, I will be conducting a full investigation of the incident and the behaviour of the officers involved.
When I arrived in Anguilla, there was no publically available standard on the Police Use of Force, or clear guidance to police officers. Many officers had not been given recognised training in the approved Police Use of Force tactics. The Policing Strategy published in July 2016 starts to address these very issues.

Acting with fairness requires the police lawfully to exercise coercive powers only when justified by necessity and in a manner that is proportionate to the circumstances. This means at all times employing the lowest levels of force appropriate to achieve the lawful objectives officers are tasked to deliver. Training must support guidance so that officers can make good decisions.
Policing often brings officers into conflict situations where force is a lawful option. However, unnecessary or excessive use of force undermines public confidence in the Police in general and could result in legal actions against the RAPF and any officer involved. The public rightly expects all officers consistently to uphold the correct standards, and as Commissioner I will not tolerate any abuse of power or excessive force by any officer in the course of their duties.”

In addition, the Governor, Ms. Christina Scott said:

“The behaviour in the video being circulated – which I have seen for the first time today – is not acceptable. It was not acceptable over two years ago when it was filmed, and even less so today now that clear standards on the Police Use of Force have been set out.

I know that the vast majority of people in Anguilla want a strong and effective police force that is willing, equipped and trained to investigate crime and help to bring to justice those responsible for undermining the fabric of our society. Unfortunately, there are others who are more interested in fabricating and circulating misleading and untrue allegations about the Force. These actions do not benefit Anguilla. They undermine the hard work the Force does and detract from the substantial and positive changes underway.

As both the Commissioner and I have said before, the RAPF is not a perfect force– indeed no police force in the world can claim that – but it is on a journey of change and improvement. The Royal Anguilla Police Force must continue to focus on building a stronger force for the future, whilst learning from previous shortcomings.”

– Press Release

anguillian
By anguillian October 17, 2016 11:55

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