Saturday 4 July, 2020

COVID protocol breaking police officers could be fired

Two police officers who were charged in May for violating COVID-19 curfew orders could be fired from the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) if convicted of their crimes.

The two officers were among six individuals arrested and slapped with several charges, which stemmed from a May 6, 2020, incident at Union, Castries.

“They have not been suspended,” Assistant Commissioner of Police with Responsibility for Crime and Intelligence Management, Wayne Charlery declared, adding, “My information is that one is on vacation leave and the other is on duty. They have been charged and are awaiting their day in court. Considering what happens in their court proceedings, then actions will follow.”

The plainclothes police officers were part of a mass crowd event during an intense COVID-19 lockdown period where gatherings of more than ten people were prohibited, in addition to a stipulated curfew.

Uniformed officers responded to the scene at Union and were engaged in an altercation with individuals at the gathering, videos of which were spread widely on social media.

The officers turned themselves in and were charged pending an investigation.

The fate of the officers lies in the hands of the police commissioner.

“Once they are found guilty and fined, we would have to fire them. You cannot have a conviction and be a police officer,” Acting Commissioner of Police, Milton Desir explained.

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