Men were fleeing police
Two men died and another was seriously injured after a vehicle being pursued by police crashed into a utility pole along West Bay Road late Friday night.
Royal Cayman Islands Police Officers had attempted to stop the Dodge Saturn the men were in around 11.30pm on Kings Road in West Bay. Officers said the car refused to stop and sped off.
“When the vehicle refused to comply with signals; lights and sirens, a short pursuit ensued,” Police Commissioner Stuart Kernohan said.
The vehicle crashed just south of the Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman. Police did not state how fast the car was travelling.
The dead men, aged 21 and 32, were passengers in the Saturn. The car’s 19-year-old driver suffered broken legs and other severe injuries. He was expected to be air lifted off the island for further medical treatment Saturday.
The teen was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol. He is expected to face charges, if he survives.
The damage caused by the wreck was so severe; firefighters had to be called in to remove the three men from the vehicle. Witnesses said power went out to the entire neighbourhood for about two hours following the accident.
West Bay Road was closed down in either direction to both vehicle and pedestrian traffic between the Ritz and Foster’s Food Fair along Seven Mile Beach.
Commissioner Kernohan did not immediately give a reason as to why the officers were trying to stop the vehicle in West Bay. He said an investigation would be conducted into the police pursuit.
‘The RCIPS has strict procedures in place for engaging in pursuits,’ he said. ‘A full and thorough investigation by a senior officer, not connected to the pursuit itself, is under way to establish the facts…and ascertain if the policy and procedures for police pursuits was adhered to.’
The Caymanian Compass has previously asked for a copy of the RCPS policy on police chases, but department officials have declined to release that information.
The Saturn’s two passengers died at the scene of the crash. Both were Caymanian. Their names were not immediately released.
Investigators said they had spoken to independent witnesses who saw the end of the chase and the crash. However, anyone else who could provide information was asked to come forward and contact the Traffic Management Unit at 946-6254, or call Chief Inspector Courtney Myles at 926-0649.
Anonymous information can also be provided to Cayman Crime Stoppers at 800-8477 (TIPS).
Caymanian Compass reporter Basia Pioro contributed to this story