Editorial for 27 July: Better policing needed here

There are two stories on today’s front page that reveal very
concerning matters with regard to policing in the Cayman Islands.

The first deals with a missing handgun (possibly two) that
the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service is now conducting an investigation to
find.

The second recounts Monday’s acquittal of three men in the
March 2010 killing of Alrick Peddie – a shooting that occurred in broad
daylight outside a West Bay home.

It is entirely possible at this point that the missing
handgun will be recovered safely. We hope that is indeed the case.

It is also possible that RCIPS investigators will continue
their hard work and find the individual or individuals responsible for Mr.
Peddie’s killing.

But for the time being, it appears the Cayman Islands
authorities are missing a gun and missing a murderer.

According Justice Karl Harrison’s decision in the murder
case, the Crown had not discharged its burden to satisfy the judge that the
three defendants were present at the scene of Mr. Peddie’s murder – in other
words, there was insufficient evidence to convict.

With regard to the missing gun, the RCIPS statement reads:
“The RCIPS has a rigid policy in place in relation to the issue and storage of
police firearms. It is clear that this policy has not been complied with on
this occasion.”

We have written about this subject many times and will state
again for the record; the RCIPS can and must become a modern, efficient and
effective policing force to keep the Cayman Islands safe for its valued
visitors and the many people who call it home.

It is situations like the two cases above that tend to
decrease public confidence in the local police service ever reaching this goal.

We believe the elected government and UK overseers should
spare no expense in achieving that goal; and if the people in the current
positions can’t get the job done, a change needs to be made.

No more excuses.