It appears the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service has begun in earnest its long-planned littering and illegal dumping crack down on the island.
A 32-year-old woman was charged with littering this week after police said she tossed a water bottle out of her car in West Bay on 31 May. She’s due to appear in court 6 August.
West Bay police commander Angelique Howell said officers observed the woman throwing the bottle from her vehicle and pulled her over. Chief Inspector Howell said it’s one of two littering cases her officers have presented to the legal department for charges since she took over West Bay police operations in April.
RCIPS also recently removed two abandoned cars from the West Bay area after their owners could not be contacted. Ms Howell has previously said those vehicles were likely dumped in remote areas after their owners left the island.
Ms Howell has been in the news quite a bit recently warning residents that the police service would soon start prosecuting those who break the Litter Law. It seems the time for warnings is over.
‘This (water bottle littering case) is the first one since I’ve been here (in West Bay),’ Ms Howell said. ‘We’ve put forward for prosecution two persons, but this is the first one that’s come back so far.’
Many complaints from Cayman Islands residents at public meetings held with RCIPS command staff earlier this year concerned littering and a perceived lack of police enforcement on the issue.
Those meetings were followed by a round of public warnings, as well as the posting of ‘no littering’ signs at various locations in West Bay.
‘People are still not complying with the Litter Law,’ Ms Howell said. ‘As much as we’ve done…people are still littering.’
Generally, Ms Howell said the community has been supportive of police actions taken to prevent littering so far.
‘Nobody has really said to me that we are focusing on this and not other issues,’ she said.