Fri | Sep 20, 2019

Letter of the Day | Faith in police restored

Published:Tuesday | September 10, 2019 | 12:10 AM
Members of the Jamaica Constabulary Force. File

THE EDITOR, Sir:

This is an open letter to the commissioner of police, Major General Antony Anderson.

There is no shortage of challenges, complaints and negative comments made about our justice system and police force. The success stories are limited, but there is hope.

On May 15, 2019, my cellular phone was stolen in an instant out of my hand while in traffic in the vicinity of Grove Road. I was ­traumatised and confused, but made a formal report to the Half-Way Tree Police Station on the recommendation of police officers who saw me in my moment of distress.

I was so traumatised that I even had to be escorted by said officers because I had completely lost my bearings. The phone was used to transfer credit to various numbers on the night in question, so I thought solving this case would be quick and easy. Unfortunately, it wasn’t.

The process required a superintendent or higher-up in the chain of command to request my subscriber information from my service provider to start an investigation. But I needed to go to the tax office to pay for a police report and write a letter to the police, requesting a letter for them to ask the phone company for the correspondence. I was frustrated and upset with the process. It was unbearable.

However, I am happy to report that close to four months later, my phone has been returned to me. After refusing to accept the absurdity that I was told by the police at the Half-Way Tree station, I reached out to the Cyber-Crime Division to take a look into the matter. I was driven to do this because I knew the phone was highly traceable, given the amount of phone credit that was transferred from it to numerous other numbers. Of note, too, is that I was armed with my phone’s IMEI number that I could readily provide to the investigating officer.

The process was long and ­arduous, and without my ­persistence and a few dedicated law enforcers, I may not have been successful. I ­particularly want to commend the following officers: Detective Corporal Morris, Inspector Gibbs, Constable Burnett, Warren Williams.

Along the way, though, there were some delays encountered that could have been expedited with adequate resources and skills. The officers do the best they can with what they have, and I am confident that with an upgrade of skills, resources and processes, our system could be further enhanced. As a citizen of this, my beloved country, I anticipate that this will be a priority in the short term.

HENEKA WATKIS-PORTER

St Catherine