Nov 11, 2008 News
Frustration is taking a heavy toll on a city businessman who, for almost the entire year, has been seeking justice against a policeman who allegedly assaulted and threatened to shoot him in the presence of his family.
Mohamed Shahabudeen Din, who operates a butchery in Albouystown, is claiming that he was beaten with a gun last Old Year’s Day, and although he was assured that the matter was under investigation, it would appear as if the police have washed their hands of the matter.
Almost a year has passed since Din reported the matter, which was also highlighted in sections of the media, and to date he is still to get a response from the investigators.
Since reporting the matter, Din has met with officials from the Ministry of Home Affairs, the Commander of ‘A’ Division of the Guyana Police Force, and with senior officers at the Ruimveldt Police Station.
But despite giving statements on the matter, Din has not heard from the police for the past four months.
“Every time I go to Ruimveldt, they tell me that the officer (dealing with the matter) is not there,” the frustrated businessman told this newspaper.
The businessman is insisting that he wants the matter to go before the courts, despite pleas from the errant policeman to settle the matter out of court.
According to the businessman, the incident has left his daughter, Aaliyah Din, who was visiting from Canada, so traumatised that she is unwilling to return to Guyana.
Din’s predicament has stemmed from an incident involving the policeman, who was reportedly under the influence of alcohol at the time of the incident.
According to the businessman, at around 20:00 hours on December 31, 2007, he was aroused by a loud crash and then his entire property was plunged into darkness.
Upon investigating, he found out that the policeman had crashed his car into a lamp post, resulting in the power supply to his business being severed.
Din said that he was speaking to a neighbour, making arrangements for the Guyana Power and Light Incorporated to repair the damage, since he had a substantial amount of meat stored in his freezers.
He said that the policeman, upon hearing him, ordered him to shut his ‘f…ing mouth’.
“I said, ‘Boss, I wasn’t speaking to you,’ and he became angry and started stomping me in the chest,” the businessman told this newspaper.
He explained that, while the policeman was beating him, a firearm, which appeared to be a 9mm pistol, dropped from the policeman’s waist.
The policeman picked it up, but continued to cuff the businessman, while holding the weapon in a threatening position.
By this time, the commotion had aroused Din’s son, Junior, who went to his father’s assistance.
He was pounced upon by two other men who were in the policeman’s car.
The businessman said that he made a dash to escape the beating, but the policeman pursued him and, with his gun cocked, threatened to shoot Din.
In the process of running, the businessman’s cellular phone and $12,000 in cash fell from his pocket. The items were reportedly picked up by the two men who were with the policeman.
Din believes that, had it not been for another female resident, who gave him refuge in her apartment, the cop would have shot him.
“Even when I tried to come out the woman warned me that the policeman was still outside with the gun in his hand,” Din explained.
He said that after the cop and his accomplices had left the area, he and his son reported the matter to the Ruimveldt Police Station, and were advised to seek medical attention at the Georgetown Hospital, which they did.
On January 2, 2008, Din went to the Ministry of Home Affairs and was advised by an officer there to speak with the Divisional Commander at Brickdam.
“The Commander was very professional. He sent for the policeman and assured me that the matter would be thoroughly investigated. I then gave a statement at the Ruimveldt Police Station,” Din said.
During this time he began receiving several messages from the policeman, asking him not to pursue the matter.
This newspaper understands that the policeman has since visited the businessman and offered him a brand new cellular phone, and has made an impassioned plea for him to drop the matter.
But the businessman is insisting that he will pursue the matter, since he was advised to do so by a senior police officer.
“I feel that if I don’t go through with this, this cop could do the same to others, and he may want to continue to harass me. This thing must stop,” Din said.
He added that the beating has caused him to suffer severe chest pain, which has forced him to seek medical attention.
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