Barred club-goers face arrest

People who are designated ‘persona non grata’ at Grand Cayman nightclubs can be arrested by police if they attempt to return to those establishments after being barred.

Royal Cayman Islands Police Superintendent Marlon Bodden said officers have always had the ability to arrest those individuals for trespassing if they receive a formal communication from the club about a certain person or group being barred from attending the establishment.

However, he said local clubs and officers are trying to establish a more robust system in which nightclubs and bars communicate with each other about problem patrons.

“Just because you’re barred from one club, it [doesn’t] necessarily mean that it would automatically translate into being barred from all clubs,” Superintendent Bodden said. “What we’re saying is that the clubs should speak with each other….and once an individual has been barred from a particular club, we think the other clubs should be aware of that.”

What the nightclubs should do, according to Mr. Bodden, is notify both the barred individual and the police via a formal letter. If that person returns to the premises, club employees are then free to call the police.

“It would be trespassing because they would have received a formal letter telling them they are forbidden because of their conduct or a series of misbehaviours,” Mr. Bodden said.

Other changes being discussed among police and local clubs include signed amendments to employment agreements that require nightclub workers, including security guards, to cooperate with police.

Police Commissioner David Baines has previously said officers with the George Town “hot spot” teams had been delayed at the entrances of certain bars, essentially impeding them in the course of their duties.

Police indicated nightclubs have generally agreed not to dispense glass beer bottles, except at VIP areas, where it is considered part of the service.

The nightclubs have agreed to form an association that will meet with RCIPS officers quarterly.

The clubs have also agreed to install signs that promote responsible drinking.


  1. I would be interested to see where Superintendent Bodden gets the power to arrest for trespassing. A club is a private place and therefore trespassing would be a civil matter – not one where the RCIPS could take action except for a Breach of the Peace.

    What is probably required is a sentence by the courts that bar persons who have committed drink related offences from all licensed premises.

    This looks to me, on the face of it, as if a club can ban someone for any reason whatsoever (manager doesn’t like them) and then the RCIPS will be acting for the club and outside of their powers and the law.

    The Beachbum

  2. Beachbum

    You never cease to amaze me, as an ex-British police officer, as you claim to be.

    Who in the Cayman Islands are you trying to fool;you’re certainly not fooling me.

    This situation outlined here is exactly the same as it is in Britain and I should know.

    I’ve provided top-level liqour licenced premises security services in both Britain and the Cayman Islands.

    I am also a qualified trainer in the British SIA (Security Industry Authority) Door Supervision courses, physical intervention and the MEB police baton (which is illegal for use for security officers in Britain but can be used with the CoP’s permission and authority in Cayman).

    The nightclub system in Cayman is just now catching up to the Pub Watch system that works in many town-centres in the UK, as you are well familiar with.

    What needs to happen now is exactly what my business was offering the Cayman Islands in 2008 and still is; a proper, uniform training certification that all liquor-licenced premises security personnell should have to take, similar to the SIA badge.

    Cayman usually takes time to catch up but this system is certainly heading in the same direction things have gone in the United Kingdom.

    In both Britain and Cayman, the club/pub owner does not need to give a reason to bar someone from their premises but logically, an owner/manager does not turn away paying, well-behaved customers; its bad for business as there is less money in the till at the end of the night.

    Its assumed that if someone or group has been barred, its for unaccetable or illegal behaviour and to return to a premises once barred constitutes criminal trespass; that is the law in Britain as well and you well know it.

    Without a doubt, the opening for abuse of this system for personal reasons exist; security and/or management not liking people for personal reasons etc, etc, and that happens in Britain on a more regular basis than happens in Cayman…

    But a person who has been wronged usually has an avenue of complaint and a proper investigative process to rely on.

    Clogging up the court system with unecessary cases does not happen in Britain; police issue cautions, 24-hour street curfews, fixed-penalty fines etc on the spot; all meant to deal with antisocial behaviour outside of the court system.

    What is your purpose for disseminating misleading information and opinions in the Cayman Islands.

    I’d dearly love to know.

  3. Oh dear, oh dear….. to have so many ‘qualifications’ and still not know the law in the UK!

    You say:
    ‘Its assumed that if someone or group has been barred, its for unaccetable or illegal behaviour and to return to a premises once barred constitutes criminal trespass; that is the law in Britain as well and you well know it.’

    Well, that isn’t true. You should know that but clearly don’t.

    In the UK ‘Criminal Trespass’ applies to a specific list of sites, including defence sites, nuclear power stations and royal palaces. Another type applies to sites where bye-laws forbid trespass – these include MOD property, railway property, and perhaps other sites like power stations. There are also other laws which cover trespass in a criminal sense – Theft Act, for example, in relation to burglary.

    Unless a person is barred BY LAW from entering a club (i.e.: by a court) then any subsequent trespass is a ‘civil trespass’. Here the police can only act in two capacities: Firstly to prevent a Breach of the Peace or, in the UK, and this bit Firery, I would learn if I were you….. is under Section 143 (4) (a) Licensing Act 2003 which deals with a license holder or their agent requesting for Constable to ASSIST a Licensed premises to expel a person who is drunk or disorderly or to assist in preventing entry of such person.

    The Criminal Law Act 1977 also makes it a criminal offence to threaten violence to gain entry to premises but that is far beyond being barred and returning.

    My fear here is that if a RCIPS Officer arrests someone who is not causing a Breach of the Peace just because they have returned to a club where the management have barred them then they wil be acting outside their powers and would be liable for false arrest.

    The responsibility where there is no ‘criminal trespass’ is for the management and their security staff to manage who comes in or not. And, dear Firery, is where you knuckle draggers come in

    The Beachbum

  4. And here, Mr. Beacbum…

    is where your supposed technical knowledge of the law has very little use in the application of the law.

    If you had done any of this type of work, you would know that the issue of criminal trespass comes into effect when a person who’s been barred has turned up at the premises and is using threatening and violent tactics to be allowed entry…

    If he/she has accepted their status, the police would not need to be involved in the first place because they would avoid the premises from which they have been barred.

    This situation is not addressing a peaceful barring of a person.

    It is addressing a situation where the offenses involved are criminal trespass, a breach of the peace and violent and threatening behaviour when a banned party returns to a venue and tries to either force their way in or objects violently to being again ejected or asked to vacate the premises by security staff.

    As the old saying goes, a little knowledge can be a very dangerous thing.

    The way the law is written and the way it is applied can be two very seperate things, as I would expect you to know.

  5. How laws are applied has to be in accordance with the laws.
    Look at the first paragraph of this article:

    People who are designated ‘persona non grata’ at Grand Cayman nightclubs can be arrested by police if they attempt to return to those establishments after being barred

    It says nothing about violent or threatening behaviour.

    Look at the second paragraph:

    Royal Cayman Islands Police Superintendent Marlon Bodden said officers have always had the ability to arrest those individuals for trespassing if they receive a formal communication from the club about a certain person or group being barred from attending the establishment.

    Again, nothing about behaviour simply a claim that officers may arrest if they are told that person A is barred.

    The trouble with your ‘interpretation’ is that you make assumptions, you look for things that aren’t there – very dangerous practices for anyone who claims to work within the law.

    I was making, and continue to make, the very valid point that this article appears to make claims for powers for the RCIPS which I dispute. My reason for raising this was not to have a competition on who knows most – no contest there – but to start a discussion to ensure that police officers are not being given erroneous instructions by their senior officers and getting themselves into trouble.

    Please don’t insult me by applying circumstances that aren’t there. I have spent over 30 years applying laws, most times getting it right sometimes not getting it right.

    You mention 24 hour street curfews. I have no idea where you get that from. You might care to look at the Anti Social Behaviour Act 2003 (S30) and actually understand what a ‘dispersal order’ actually means.

    As they say, a little knowledge is a very dangerous thing!

    The Beachbum

  6. DonQuijote:

    You are absolutely right. There is no public right of access to any private premises. Anyone who enters any private land or place is guilty of a ‘civil trespass’.

    The owner or their agent may use ‘as much force as is necessary’ to have the person removed from their premises and, in the case of licensed premises, can call upon a Constable to ASSIST them to do so.

    After that any remedy in law is in the civil courts.

    The Beachbum

  7. Beachbum

    You’re driving me barmy, and everyone else…

    With this detailed, long-winded diatribe of what is written down in the lawsbooks…

    That is for lawyers to determine in the courts; not even police officers know the laws to the fullest extent when they are applying it, they are not lawyers.

    What I am flat-out telling you by personal experience is that this report in Caycompass and Sup. Marlon Bodden’s statement has to do with violent behaviour and reactions by nightclub patrons when being ejected and barred; it does not need to be specifically stated for those of us who have the knowledge and experience of Cayman’s nightclubs and even for residents of Cayman who don’t.

    They already know what does down in Cayman’s nightclubs and bars.


    In England, when a barred patron shows up at a pub and begins to act aggressively and violently, the Old Bill is called and they are arrested for anything the Old Bill can charge them with at the time, thrown in the paddy wagon and off to the cells they go…

    I’ve controlled enough venues, stopped enough fights and ejected enough people…and called the Old Bill and had a few arrested in my time, to know how it works.

    End of; give it up, man.

  8. I am sorry you can’t read Firery but NOWHERE in this report does it mention violent behaviour. That is an element introduced BY YOU to try and hide your lack of any real knowledge of the law.

    You see, you fall into the trap of ASSUMING you know what Superintendent Bodden meant rather than deal with what Superintendent Bodden SAID.

    I will agree with you that Police Officers are not lawyers and do make mistakes when applying it. THIS IS WHAT I AM TRYING TO AVOID HERE.

    And just to clear up another of your obvious misconceptions: the police HAVE to act within the law. There is no difference between what the law says and what the police MUST do. That’s the kind of behaviour you get from security staff who put on a a windcheater that says ‘SECURITY’ and then act like they are immune from the law. I’ve locked enough of those muppets up for assault to know!

    Just accept that what is written down in those lawbooks you seem to have avoided for far too long is actually quite important.

    The Beachbum

  9. I disagree that police officers makes more mistakes. Lawyers too, no human being is infallible in the entire universe. Actually police knows more laws in his jurisdiction; lawyer is more generic and just sits in office all day so when you come to him he can look up the law in one of his many law books. Police is smarter than lawyer as they are field man in uniforms, with guns or batons, around the streets all day, more sex appeal; while lawyers just read and talk for truth or lies. There are so many countries that have lawyers working as police, however survey shows police lawyers tends to be sluggish in operation, they tend to read law books while chasing the criminals.

  10. And now we’ve come full circle…

    The RCIPS have now said, through Sup. Marlon Bodden, that they will now begin to arrest unruly nighclubbers who have been barred from Cayman’s nightclubs if and when necessary…

    Beachbum is reminding John Q peeps of the laws that both nightclubbers and the ‘muppets’ that kick them out and ban them should be aware of…

    Kudos for him…

    Its a move in the right direction for all parties involved that…

    Cayman has a problem that needs to be addressed, which includes those security muppets being properly trained and licenced…

    Maybe now, the RCIPS will take some responsibility in that area as well…but

    if those muppets were not there, how much worse would the situation be.

    I’m happy that they’re finally being given some support by the police…

    Its been a long time in coming.

    The police in Cayman certainly don’t need Beachbum undermining their decisions and efforts in this area simply because it suits his personal agenda to do so…

    I seriously hope that Cayman can rise above this type of manipulation.

  11. No personal agenda – just a desire to see that police officers are not being asked to step outside their LAWFUL powers. Once anyone does that then Cayman or anywhere else is a worse place for it.

    At least I always addressed my remarks to what Superintendent Bodden is reported as saying instead of making it up.

    And I am so pleased that glass bottles will no longer be distributed except, of course, in VIP areas. Now that is funny!

    The Beachbum

  12. Shut all liquor dispensing clubs, pubs, whatever, at midnight or earlier; this will reduce drunken bahaviour, and allow everyone (clubbers included) to get a decent (or indecent) night’s sleep, reduce Police overtime, reduce the cost to clubs etc of paying bouncers extra hours, reduce accidents on the roads, perhaps reduce the business of the Licensing Board, and surely reduce the cost of running the Courts.
    There will be other benefits: fathers – and mothers-will be able to home to look after their children, and spend less money on liquor and crisps etc. Lovers will be able to mouth sweet nothings without risk of assault auditory or physical.
    Anyone who wants to go on drinking can do it at home(his, her’s or someone else’s).
    For a Christian country, and Lord knows we have enough politicians paying lip service in that direction, this seems pretty obvious, doesn’t it?

  13. Old Hand

    This is not a realistic solution, however tempting it might sound.

    Its totally impossible to roll back the clock; Cayman is now a modern and tourist-oriented society.

    Nightlife, music and alcohol-related entertainment is and has been a regular part of normal human activities for literally 000s of years.

    If you read your Bible, you will see references to dancing and drinking as early as mankind has been in existence…Cayman is no different from anywhere else in the world in that respect and there is no logical reasons why it should be.

    What needs to happen in Cayman is a strengthening of the private security services and systems that are supposedly in place to police alcohol-related venues and keep them safe and crime-free.

    These systems are not perfect in other countries either but they are more organised and industry-specific than in Cayman.

    There is no reason why weapons cannot be searched for, confiscated and charges brought against offenders at any and all premises where liquor is served in the Cayman Islands; there should be a law that holds venues responsible for when weapons are found or used on a premises because the owners/management have not taken the necessary measures to prevent their entry.

    Security officers in Cayman come from a variety of backgrounds and countries, most with absolutely no special training in relation to controlling alcohol-serving premises and the crowds of people that attend them, no training in conflict management and absolutely no training in the physical skills necessary to enforce ejections and searches in a legally-prescribed manner.

    For example; for the number of stabbing incidetns that has happened at Calico Jacks recently, by now a robust system of security searching, screening and enforcement should be in place; 0 tolerance to any kind of weapons, unacceptable behaviour etc etc.

    No exceptions, break the rules and you’re gone for good.

    I can guarantee you these venues have security staff present who are just standing around looking elsewhere while the build-up to these incidents are taking place right before their very eyes…

    And can do absolutely nothing about it.

    Particularly for liquor-licenced security, there is a lot more that can be done in the Cayman Islands but simply isn’t being done…

    In the meantime, the incidents continue to rise in numbers and seriousness.

  14. Old Hand – I agree. 99% of tourists don’t frequent tawdry nightclubs that attract nothing more than the n’er do wells.

    Most tourists will partake of a few drinks in a restaurant or ambient bar (as indeed will locals) or in their hotels. That is where the entertainment needs to be concentrated on.

    And by having a closing time at a reasonable hour would mean that the islands would cement itself as a family destination.

    The Beachbum