Thu | Aug 17, 2017

MoBay residents blast ‘hostile policing’

Published:Saturday | August 1, 2015 | 8:00 AMAdrian Frater

WESTERN BUREAU:

WHILE MOST stakeholders in Montego Bay are seemingly happy with the efforts of the security forces to quell the lawlessness which has been plaguing the western city, some inner-city residents are hopping mad, lashing out at the tactics being used by the lawmen.

A group of Glendevon residents yesterday accused the police of abusing their authority. The residents claimed they experienced a night of "hostile policing".

"What we saw was hostile policing at its worst ," an elderly grandmother, who asked not to be identified, told The Gleaner. "This morning (yesterday), I heard a knock on my window and before I could say who is that, the door was kicked off and I was staring into several guns."

According to the elderly woman, while the police ignored her after her door was kicked off, she was left frightened and intimidated by the harsh manner in which her two teenage grandsons were treated.

"They roughed up the boys ... . At one point, one of the policemen even said, 'mek we kill the bwoy dem'," recounted the elderly woman. "Luckily, another one said no, "unoo cyaa just kill dem suh ...; dem nuh do nothing."

Several residents who claimed their doors were kicked off or door locks cut off by the police raiding party, have made contact with INDECOM with a view to ultimately seeking compensation.

pre-dawn operation

Within recent days, several

residents from communities such as Mt Salem, Flankers. Granville and Glendevon, have also complained to The Gleaner that young men were being randomly picked up in pre-dawn police-military operations, roughed up and threatened and then released.

"This is bad policing ...; when you treat everybody like criminals how do you expect the law-abiding ones to support the police?" argued another Glen-devon resident, who asked not to be identified. "The police need to investigate, identify the troublemakers and then go after them."

Last week, the police high command deployed more than 150 police personnel to St James to help quell the wanton lawlessness which has sparked more than 120 murders since the start of the year.

Earlier this week, Senior Superintendent Steve McGregor, the commanding officer for the St James Police Division, said the police will remain vigilant in their efforts to restore law and order to the western city.