– unnecessary detention of motor vehicles not condoned
The Guyana Police Force has asserted that no vehicle document or driver’s licence should be taken and kept by any rank as a means of ensuring that motorists report to a particular police station if necessary.
According to the police, provided that none of the documents requested by the police rank is found not to be in order or suspected to be fraudulent, there is no reason for rank to ‘seize’ it and keep it in his possession.
The force was referring to an article carried in this newspaper on July 3, under the caption, “Is this how it is done?”
In the article, the writer expressed his/her comments on several police related matters. These were the operational procedure of the police in motor vehicles when stopping motorists; the holding of the drivers’ licences of motorists when they have been stopped; the issuing of traffic tickets; and the detention of motor vehicles, particularly public transportation vehicles, by the police.
According to the police, ranks on mobile patrol duties are constantly briefed on the standard operation procedure in relation to the stopping of motorists. The procedure includes that they must exit their vehicles and approach the drivers and inform them of the reason(s) why they are being stopped.
The force stated that if police ranks remain in their vehicles after stopping a motorist who then has to go to the police vehicle, this is not in keeping with the laid down procedures and motorists ought not to get out of their vehicles unless they have been so instructed after the police have approached their vehicle.
The police force stated that traffic ticket books are being issued to traffic ranks going on duty in all Police Divisions and traffic tickets are being issued daily for varying ticketing offences.
“A traffic ticket would be issued to a defaulting driver if the offence committed is one for which a traffic ticket can be legally issued. If the offence is one for which a traffic ticket cannot be lawfully issued, then the driver could be either summoned for court or arrested and placed on a recognizance to appear before the court,” the police said in a press release.
It added that the administration of the Force does not condone the unnecessary detention of motor vehicles and the orders are clear.
“While a motor vehicle can initially be held by a rank on duty, the standard practice is that only the Divisional Commander or an Officer can give permission for any motor vehicle to be kept overnight,” the police said.
The release explained that vehicles are sometimes detained for further investigations to be conducted in instances such as if there is a suspicion that the identification mark is false, or the vehicle registration is false, or the driver is unlicensed, breach of the conditions of the Road Service Licence, or to be examined by a Certifying Officer as a result of an accident.
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