Categorized | Featured, National News

Country In A Gun Culture, Says Dames

Marvin Dames Cabinet _5680

Minister of National Security Marvin Dames, said that “every time an officer pulls a trigger, he or she has to account for their actions and there will be no cover ups.” Mr. Dames was responding to the recent police involved shooting off Sandy Lane on Sunday. 

He said  that “if those officers acted in good faith in the execution of their duty, then they will be vindicated”. 

The former Deputy Commissioner of Police was responding to reporters before heading into Cabinet meeting on the latest shooting of a 22-year-old in the area off Mason’s Addition. 

“What we are faced with in this country is the fact that a vast majority of the crimes that occur on the streets of New Providence involve persons brandishing firearms. 

“Well over 80 percent of the armed robberies and the homicides are firearms related. I’m not speaking to the incident that would have occurred a few days ago that is currently under investigation. The officer or officers involved in that will have their day of accounting and if they did something outside of their scope of responsibility, then they will have to account before the coroners court on that particular matter,” Mr. Dames said. 

The Minister  while acknowledging that the country is now in a gun culture, also acknowledged that there are things that law enforcement agencies can do to improve. 

“No one likes the fact when someone loses their life;  don’t matter who it is. A life is a precious gift and we always have to be cognizant of that. 

“But we have to allow the process to run its course.  Is there room for improvement? Absolutely.  You always have to look at these incidents and say how can we improve, how can we get better? 

“That’s what we have been doing since we came into power; that’s why we introduced the man power audit;  that’s why we are introducing new training tools for Police Officers, Defence Force Officers, Prison Officers, Customs and Immigration Officers and so we are restructuring these organizations and these agencies as we move on. It’s only been a year,” he said.

Mr. Dames said that one improvement could include body cameras, which were introduced to the police force sometime in February.  

“Well you know we would have been running some testings on body cameras  over the last few months.  We have budgeted for body cameras  in the upcoming fiscal period and it is expected that it will be introduced at that time. I will speak a little more on that during my budget communication,” Mr. Dames said. 

Since January,  there has been eight police involved killings. In January, there were four police involved killings, three in New Providence and one in Abaco. 

Two shootings occurred in February and two this month. 

Written by Jones Bahamas

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