‘Police can’t be  investigators of  themselves’ – ACP Bailey
Assistant Commissioner of Police, Trevor Bailey
February 20, 2024
‘Police can’t be investigators of themselves’ – ACP Bailey

The issue of the handling of public complaints against officers of the Royal St Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force (RSVGPF) has once again been raised with Assistant Commissioner of Police, Trevor Bailey disclosing that changes may soon be made to the Public Relations and Complaints Department.

The changes, if and when implemented, would see the separation of the Public Relations Office and the Complaints Department.

ACP Bailey acknowledged the public unease that the organization receiving complaints from the public about police misconduct cannot be the same entity charged with investigating the reports.

“I am sure that in the not too distant future, efforts are being made to separate the two offices so public relations will be separate from the complaints department. We share your concern where persons are of the opinion that police can’t be investigators of themselves.”

While ACP Bailey noted the concerns of the public, he said that there have been instances where complaints have been dealt with in favour of the complainant.

“I hear the concerns; I am not in total agreement because I have heard of cases where people complain that their rights were violated and … persons were charged either criminally or disciplinary and convicted.”

Just last month, three police officers assigned to the Stubbs District Station were suspended pending an investigation into an alleged case of child abuse. The issue came to light after pictures and videos taken by the child’s family were posted to social media showing evidence of an alleged beating the ten-year-old male child suffered while in police custody. The officers are to receive half-pay until the investigation is completed.

ACP Bailey added that there are internal policies to govern penalties for officers found guilty of misconduct.

“We have our own internal court system where if you are found guilty of any breech you can be fined up to $250 per charge. Let’s say you are convicted on four counts you could find yourself losing a $1,000 from your salary.”