Last week in Laborie, in the course of defending in court a man on charges of assault, Mr. Henry Giraudy issued the following admonition: “When you are yourself the complainant, arresting and investigating officer, your objectivity and credibility are bound to be in question.” We at the STAR are for once happy to agree with the chairman of the incumbent party who, it turns out, is in court quite a showman. We are also pleased to report that Mr. Giraudy’s client was cleared by the magistrate Indira Hariprasad.
The cited case brought to mind another police-related matter. Several weeks ago a policewoman complained to local media representatives that the deputy police commissioner Andrew Frederick had assaulted her after she disobeyed his order to remove her body from a restricted area of the police canteen. In his own related report to Commissioner Cuthbert Phillips, Frederick acknowledged he had attempted to eject the female officer “by holding her arm.”
Following an investigation several charges were made against the complaining officer, among them insubordination and “talking to the press without official permission.” By all accounts no charges have been laid against the accused deputy police commissioner Frederick. Does this mean he acted properly when he grabbed the female officer and dragged her out of the canteen? Might he not have taken alternative action not involving physical contact with his female colleague—who has also claimed there was bad blood between them because she had been involved in the arrest of his girlfriend’s brother, currently in prison for assaulting a police officer?
It has for some time bruited about that the officer who investigated the canteen incident is a member of one of two police factions, one ostensibly led by the deputy police commissioner. True or false, such rumors are symptomatic of the disease that for a long time now has afflicted the police force. Especially in the circumstances should the police force be permitted to investigate itself? Reportedly, the prime minister has received the report from the Hudson-Phillips inquiry into the workings of the Royal St. Lucia Police Force. The sooner its recommendations are implemented the better—for the force itself and for the nation that depends on it for protection of life and property!
Editor’s Note: The more things change. The above by publisher Rick Wayne was first published in the STAR of 11 June 1988. As for the Hudson-Phillips Inquiry, based on its recommendations Commissioner Cuthbert Phillips was controversially disposed of by the Public Service Commission, as were his deputy Andrew Frederick and his brother Norbert!