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Dr. Richard Rosado: New Deputy Commissioner of Police’s story of struggle and survival fuels commitment to educating Police Department

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Posted: Saturday, January 15, 2022. 5:23 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: Deputy Commissioner of Police Dr. Richard Rosado hopes his story will be an example for the men and women he leads in the Belize Police Department – but it was a long, hard road to fulfill his ambition.

In a one-on-one interview with Breaking Belize News (BBN), the Deputy ComPol told us that his new post “has many challenges but I am committed to the task…I am committed to building partnerships with all our stakeholders as we aim to make Belize a safer place.”

That commitment comes from a deep-seated personal history as a son of a police officer, now a father to another and uncle to a third – the latter are recent graduates of the Training Academy and third generation of the Rosado family in the Department.

Indeed, his is a family of cops, raised in Southside Belize City at the corner of Santa Barbara and Ebony Streets.

His late father, Corporal of Police Fernando Rosado Senior, was critically injured in the line of duty, and therefore never lived to see his dream of all his sons becoming policemen. A brother, Fernando Jr., was shot four times and killed, also while on duty.

But the incident that the Deputy Commissioner says most influenced his decision to join the ranks was when, one day, he and his mother were returning from purchasing ingredients to make bread which he sold for a living.

An officer they met apparently took away the items and lifted the baton at his mother, telling her to “roll,” and they went home empty-handed and hungry.

But before they went to sleep that night, DCP Rosado said, he swore to his mother that he would join the Department and correct that injustice, to which she said, “I know, son, I know.” She, fortunately, is still alive today.

Rosado told us that he credits then-Minister of Education, later Prime Minister, Said Musa, with furthering his education. They met when Rosado went to the Ministry’s office to sell bread and the Minister was in. They conversed and Musa learned that Rosado had been accepted to the-then University College of Belize (UCB) but could not afford it. Musa said he would intervene and DCP Rosado recalls borrowing his sister’s pink shoes for the return visit, which resulted in a full scholarship and bursary.

Rosado then attended Murray State University in the U.S., leaving Belize with just US$20 in his pockets and sleeping with a friend he met the first day from India in the hallway of the dorm area. He later got a work scholarship.

Dr. Rosado’s studies culminated in a doctorate in Business Administration with concentration in Police Leadership from the University of Edinburgh; his dissertation was on managing change within a law enforcement organization.

After two decades in the Department, Dr. Rosado is convinced that it cannot survive with officers on high school diplomas and less. An educated Department, he told us, is one that will shun and reduce incidents of police brutality; work to accept and rehabilitate the marginalized rather than oppress and suppress gang members, to work with all rather than against all.

Dr. Rosado further committed to a process of inclusion in planning, implementation, and assessment in operational and intervention strategy with stakeholders inside and outside the Department and internationally, and made no secret that he does hope to be Commissioner someday.

He told us that he is “humbled to be selected” and promises to continue his hard-working style, putting in 16 to 18 hours at minimum daily and embracing the new era of policing and changing mindsets to adapt to crime-fighting and solving methods. “We must all make the effort to change if we wish to succeed,” he concluded.

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