Please allow me space in your paper to have another one of my horrifying encounters with police known to the world. I feel it is necessary to publicise these instances of police brutality and uncivilized behaviour because the general public, citizens of all walks of life and varying professional and social statuses suffer similarly, at the hands of these arrogant and very sick police.
On October 12, 2018, a friend accompanied me to Canal to visit family. We were returning to Berbice very late and he was a bit tired so I was driving. About 12:55am, on Saturday October 13, 2018, I was stopped by a police on the public road, a few yards from the Hope Bridge. I saw three stripes on his shoulder.
With the usual arrogance and a noticeable disrespectful attitude, he told me to put on my interior lights. I offered him a very pleasant ‘goodnight‘ and asked why he wanted my interior lights on. He blurted out, “Put on your interior lights”.
This time I asked him why he stopped me. He did not say “goodnight” and he did not answer my question. He repeated his demand, “Put on your interior lights”. I leaned my head out of the window and very loudly asked, “Why have you stopped me?”
This imbecile in uniform told me I was disrespectful to the police because I shouted at the police and I should pull over in the corner. I simply said that I raised my voice to ensure he heard the question I asked. I honestly thought he had a hearing problem.
This man in uniform, supported by five or six men with guns that seem too heavy for them to hold properly, told me he had to search my vehicle because I seem to be drunk. I told him his eyes must be special and added that I do not drink and I was tired. I also told this first class bully in a uniform, with three stripes that I will not allow him to search my vehicle on that dismal stretch of road and I was going to drive off.
His words were clear. He smilingly told me to drive off and I will see what will happen. Therefore, I drove off at the normal rate of speed. HE DID NOT TELL ME THEN TO STOP.
About two minutes later, I saw the high beams of a vehicle behind me and the red and blue lights were flashing. I again stopped, even though that police vehicle did not qualify as an “emergency” vehicle (it did not display the proper lights).
MY car was surrounded by fully armed men with oversized guns and this barking dog in uniform was yelling for me to park on the grass shoulder of the road, just about two hundred yards from the Unity turn.
Well, I learnt from my dear friend and wonderful colleague, RYAN F. CRAWFORD, and so I had my phone set to record a display of Police brutality, police stupidity and a blatant disregard for the lives and status of Citizens in this world-renowned country of ours.
By now, it is the normal practice of the people who patrol our roads and so I was not surprised when one policeman had his phone set and he was videoing the Uniformed Upholders of the law, as they were carrying out their job. Was that their job?
I was told to step out of my vehicle because I drove away from the police. I told this same Jackass that he told me to drive off and I did and he never tried to stop me. I also told him that I am a member of parliament (MP) and I handed him my MP identification, which he refused to even look at.
Here is where Social and Professional statuses get a back burner to Police arrogance and stupidity. This sergeant told me that he was not in politics and had to search my person and my vehicle because he had to chase me down. He insisted on searching my vehicle for firearms and then asked if I had a gun licence and I replied in the affirmative.
He asked if I had a gun on me and I told him my handgun was in my car. He, with armed men around my vehicle, insisted on me getting out of the car. I did but not before showing him my MP ID again, this time putting it to the phone that was used to record the encounter because I thought he did not see it properly.
I asked his name and he said Sergeant Richard. Unfailingly, this man told me I was assaulting the police by pointing my finger in the face of the police. I simply told him I was putting my ID into the light so he could see it properly. I got out of the car.
This is what a SET-UP is about. I am not sure of his name but he said it was Richard. Richard asked me to take my gun out of the car and signaled to the “shooters”, two of whom moved around me. Before I went back into my car, I told Richard that I will get the gun, make it safe and then give it to him. I told him not to shoot me once I picked it up.
Not a life was in sight and my friend almost pissed his pants—I think he did piss his pants. I was sure Richard wanted me to pick up my gun so he could shoot me for “pulling a gun on him”.
If I had allowed that dunce of a policeman to bully me into ‘drawing my gun’ then I would have proven to him that I had no brain and fit to be disposed of. I went back into my car, picked up my hand gun, took out the clip and before showing it to “ THIS SET-UP KING” spoke loudly that I was going to show him my gun. I did and I am still alive. Phew!!!!.
Richard demanded to see my licence and I showed it to him. He took over five minutes to read the licence so I am guessing he has a slight difficulty with reading, and then handed it back to me. They all walked towards the police vehicle without saying a word to me. I asked if I could go home twice before one of the blood hounds told me to go. I drove past the police vehicle and headed home to Canje, Berbice.
Mr. Editor, I would like to ask the Honourable President, The Honourable Prime Minister, the Honourable Minister of Public Security, the New (substantive) Commissioner of Police and all civic minded persons to help to educate our police ranks. If they are properly educated, then the citizens would be treated with some kind of respect and civility.
Richard and an Inspector at Vigilance Police station who both told me, on different occasions, that they can stop and search any vehicle any time. Obviously, they do not know the law. I simply asked the man to tell me why he stopped me. That is the first thing the police MUST do. They don’t.
At Weldaad, there is a permanent roadblock and when you are stopped, you are told to ‘turn on your interior lights’, (if it’s night time). Not a word of greeting or the politeness of the word, “please”. You are just ordered to do this or do that and no reason is offered.
I will defend anyone, who has to appear at Vigilance or Cove and John Magistrate’s court, charged with any minor traffic offence FREE OF CHARGE, from now until the end of this year. Let us deal with the hooligans in uniform, out there, who must be taught a lesson in decency and politeness.
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