In the aftermath of his intervention into a New Year’s Day heist at Diamonds International, Police Commissioner David Baines has declared he welcomes an investigation into his own actions regarding the incident.
“I am happy to go on the record as stating it is entirely correct and proper that an investigation and file of evidence is presented to the Director of Public Prosecutions in relation to how and why a man was injured and hospitalized as a result of my actions on January 1,” he told the Compass.
“The use of force by any police officer has to be necessary, justified and proportionate, whatever the context and circumstances,” he said. “I have assisted the investigating officers as fully as possible and will continue to do so until the DPP has determined if my actions were warranted under the law or otherwise.”
Baines’s intervention in the robbery is the subject of an internal investigation.
The off-duty commissioner, who was driving along North Church Street en route to meet friends coming off one of the cruise ships, came across the daring holiday robbery in progress in the heart of downtown George Town. Three masked men had burst into the posh jewelry store just after 8 a.m. One held a gun to the head of the security guard while his accomplices smashed about 40 display cases and filled bags with up to $1 million worth of jewelry and watches.
As they attempted to make their getaway, Commissioner Baines rammed their vehicle, preventing it from exiting the car park and then pursued them in his Chevrolet Trailblazer as they fled on foot.
Two of the suspects were pushed into a fence by the commissioner’s SUV. One of the two slipped under commissioner’s vehicle and is currently in George Town Hospital recovering from his injuries, which appear to be non-life threatening.
Christopher Julian Myles, 32, and James Herbert McLean, 22, appeared in Summary Court last week, charged with the robbery. The hospitalized suspect has not yet been charged, although police indicate they expect him to face charges in the “very near future.”