Posted: Wednesday, June 5, 2019. 10:33 pm CST.
By Aaron Humes: We are doing our jobs, insists Commissioner of Police Chester Williams to the Belize National Teachers’ Union in response to their press release earlier today concerning the death of one of their own, Alarice Andrewin. Now, he says, they must do theirs.
The senior officer responded with annoyance to being accused of “boasting” of temporary reductions in crime only to see an immediate increase: “I have not seen any instance where either myself or anybody have been boasting about crime going down; we don’t do that. The Minister [of National Security] made mention, yes, that the statistics are showing a reduction of so much in murders and that’s the reality – we can’t cheat the Police away from that; we are doing what we can. And to say that we are not doing our jobs – I just don’t know what to say, honestly.”
Commissioner Williams added, “We don’t mind everybody’s homes. We have been doing a lot, and as a member of the media, I’m sure that you will agree with me that we have seen a marked reduction in crime. And for people who want to sit and blame the police for every crime that occurs, I say shame on them!”
He further made note that teachers actually spend more time with our youngest and that “we cannot be pointing fingers in other areas, and feel like it is not being pointed back at us.”
The Commissioner later denied that any resources allocated to reducing murders may have contributed to spikes in robberies and burglaries in residential areas, stating that police have active operations in place and have been working “long, tireless hours, and we don’t get overtime pay. But our officers are committed, they are dedicated, and they are out there. So when they want to insinuate that we are not working, I have to take it as an insult to the hardworking men and women of the Belize Police Department.”
The Commissioner has directed the establishment of “rural patrols” from the towns to cover entire districts in addition to the single-staffed police stations, and in Belize City, he justified the extra resources in gang-ridden areas as a means of saving lives, and security should be business owners’ first priority, with police visiting on patrol.
Coming back to the sensational triple homicide that was the purpose of the press conference, Commissioner Williams admits it is “mind-boggling” to find what motive could be behind it because it did not follow any noted crime patterns, and thus not foreseen and not preventable.
The Commissioner promised his best for Alarice Andrewin’s father and family, who are trying to keep up their face in light of what they are going through, and said it had kept him up trying to figure this one out and some ideas are already percolating. But he kept those to himself for now.
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