The Caymanian Compass published a story in Friday’s paper
regarding a lawsuit filed over the rock throwing incidents that plagued Bodden
Town during 2007 and 2008.
If you haven’t read it, we encourage you to pick up a copy
of the 4 May paper or click here and consider what the allegations detailed in
this lawsuit mean to our society.
A lawsuit, in and of itself, is proof of nothing. However,
we are aware that some of the RCIPS officers involved in this continuing and
shocking display of alleged abuse of their authority have been encouraged to
leave the department and that one has in fact departed since these events.
If half of the claims stated in this lawsuit are found to be
true, the individuals who perpetrated them have no right to wear a uniform or
serve the public in any responsible capacity.
If the claims are true and correct, then at best – at best –
officers can be described to have overreacted to a situation that was
generating a lot of negative press and where there was significant pressure
from the community to make arrests in connection with the rock throwing. At
worst, a number of sworn RCIPS officers abused their authority and terrorised a
tiny woman over an offence they knew she could not have committed.
Police officers in any society wield an awesome power; they
have the authority in the appropriate situations to take an individual’s
liberty for a period of time without even charging them with a crime.
They can even lawfully take someone’s life, if the situation
We need to consider as a society exactly to whom we are
giving such overwhelming authority, because it can go so very wrong if those
individuals are not up to the job.
Paying police officers more would help; longer and more
involved training for rookie cops also is a must, we believe.
If the country can’t get this right, it is in serious