Top cops were on duty at Kittiwake sinking

| 07/01/2011

(CNS): The Royal Cayman Islands Police Service has confirmed that its senior officers were on duty when marine vessels and the helicopter attended the sinking of the Kittiwake off Seven Mile Beach on Wednesday morning. A number of senior police officers were spotted close to the sinking aboard one of the Marine Unit boats and the police helicopter was present throughout the event. A police spokesperson said senior officers from Silver command aboard the Tornado were on active duty during the sinking itself, as well as familiarizing themselves with the location of the Kittiwake for future security and safety operations. (Top cops Chief Inspector Richard Burrows, Chief Superintendent John Jones and Detective Chief Inspector Peter Kennett aboard the Tornado  – Photos by Dennie Warren Jr)

The police were there, officials revealed, not only to police the exclusion zone but to ensure the safety and security of the operation.

“The RCIPS did have an official role in relation to the security and safety of the operation and would have been responsible for co-ordinating an emergency response to any mishap,” the RCIPS spokesperson told CNS. She explained that the service would retain ongoing responsibility in relation to any possible future diving incidents and therefore had to acquaint themselves with the layout of the vessel for rescue purposes.

“The sinking of the vessel certainly carried an element of risk and it was necessary to police an exclusion zone until the ship came to rest on the ocean floor. We are pleased to say that the operation passed off without incident and ask that those planning to dive or snorkel around the wreck follow CITA rules published on their website.”

The police spokesperson confirmed that Chief Superintendent, Head of Operations John Jones was aboard the marine vessel, together with two chief inspectors who carry silver command responsibilities for emergency situations. There were no other senior officers on board.

(The RCIPS helicopter joins Cayman Helicopters in the sky over the sinking –  Photo Dennie Warren Jr)

Meanwhile, over at the Spotts Dock area the Marine Unit was involved in a rescue operation following a distress call. A boat was drifting out to sea with one soul on board and The Guardian assisted in ensuring the boat was taken to shore safely, police confirmed.


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  1. Anonymous says:

    These are the kind of perks of the job I am able to accept, as opposed to Mac’s daily taking.

  2. Anonymous fisher man says:

    OFFICERS FOR SECURITY   i all these officers were there for security reason, they would have secure them self first. this would have bee done by putting on the life jacket.  this was just a pleasure trip, with a civilian on board. what bunch of jookers. if she had been left at work we might have got some thing done if she had got our computers working..        i notice one poster is braging about twosenior officer at scene of robbery.  can you tell us what they did to catch these suspects   NOTHING.  WHAT A MESS one spoke person has a tie txxxxe, connot catch the robbers,but can jolly ride during work time

  3. Anonymous says:

    C’mon, give the RCIPS Marine Branch a break! At least they took a boat into the water instead of leaving them parked on the grass behind the George Town Fire Station! 

    Let’s sink another dive site soon and see if they can launch twice in one year!

  4. Anonymous says:

     Blame the UDP and Blame Caymanians.

    This would never happen in jolly old England where we always do things right!

    • Janice says:

      yes, blame the UDP for this sinking which will boost the economy and become a haven and home for marine life!  Just admit… lol… you are one envious PPM supporter or someone in the news media out to make the government look incompetent!

  5. nauticalone says:

    Three high ranking brass there "for security"….yeah right! 

    Are we to expect then, that these officers will be there and at other locations to pubicly provide security henceforth?                          

    Bloody ell….tell us another one me chap….

  6. Captain Crunch says:

     Any good marine commander & crew would know these things. In fact any US Coast Guard or UK Royal Navy training you receive, safety procedures are paramount and is in fact a large part of such training. These guys obvious do not have clue, but i will tell after this flogging they will be up to their eyeballs in life vest next time. I really do not know what is happening to the RCIPS their high standards have dropped really badly. The previous marine officers under Mr Derek Hanes were excellent bunch of guys. I can remember the last visits of HRH Prince Andrew even his Personal Aide had to wear at Life vest on board the Police vessel. Come RCIPS you can to do better than this.

  7. Libertarian says:

    Let us say that one needs his business establishment protected and secured from criminals, right away the right thing to do would be to look at his financial budget and assess what is needed for the protection and security of the store. The essentials would be the protection of life and property – wouldn’t it? For a grocery store, let’s say, he would hire security officers for the entrances, CCTV camaras, a Security Manager to supervised the store, etc… But it appears this is not how our government operates!

    We are a very small island and they have hired 300+ officers. It is like one having a store like the size of Fosters, and I have 30+ security officers in the store! One as a shopper will ask, why so many officers for one task! Let us say, there is one entrance to ‘Price Is Right’, and you have 20+ officers standing at the entrance, because you never know, a whole organized team of criminals may try to run out at the same time… so the Manager appoints 20+ officers for standby. One who is a customer in his or her right sense would have to to ask, why so many officers are needed???  Is it because of an exaggerated fear?

    Let us say, the Security Manager is a complete coward!  He would ask for more officers so to protect his cronies and own backside – wouldn’t he? So let us say because he is a coward that this store gets an additional 30+ more officers. Besides you need assistance, you have some dumb and new trivial rules (laws) to monitor, you need to promote those officers who have been there for a long time and hence need more ground officers so that they can have at least an army to command. The Security Manager comes to the Owner of the store (Government), paints a gloomy picture of crime, and begs him for more officers. The Owner is scared to his wits – "How much money do you need?  We don’t have enough!" Manager replies, "What about more officers from the UK?"  Store Owner – "Ok… and we will just reduce the salaries by 3.2 percent and see how much money we can sqeeze." One will start to think, isn’t the Owner and Security Manager taking this a bit too far?!

    Here you have a bloated Police Service of 300+ officers, and we are complaining about not having enough money for this and for that. We are complaining about our tax-payers monies to payfor UK officers from overseas who come here and literally take a vacation to do sqat, but tell us how corrupt we are!  Yet, strangely, the larger the service becomes, the more crime and less solved cases!  Can anyone explain to me how this picture of our financial-crime affairs makes any sense???

    Now let us say, that the Store Owner and Security Manager, bravely hire only 3 well trained and LOCAL officers for the store, have them equipped and properly managed. Along with the CCTV camaras and other security measures, the shoppers would hardly notice them, and if they do, one thing they will admit, is how hard these officers work for the dollar. And of course, they will get paid good for what they do, because there is not many of them, and no need to squeeze the tax-payers and a 3.2 cut on everyone else. I would think that the store would become very successful. But this is not the way our government is dealing with things on this little rock!  

    In the Caribbean, we have the largest Civil Service for a population; moreover, we have the largest Police force as well. Heard they are now talking about increasing the islands population, because businesses and companies are not having enough customers to make money. People are just pulling out and leaving the island. Nothing has still be said about reducing fees, permits, licenses, and duties so that the small companies could thrive on the island. Nothing has been said on how they could help the local to start and maintain their own business. They have done nothing about the cost of living, yet they would declare that we need more people here!  Hello!!!

    Folks… something does not look right with this picture!  It looks like we are spending, spending, spending, and increasing more responsibilities where it is unnecessary!  It looks like this Government is all about pleasing the people and the employees of government! People like us and Miller Report, has asked them to reduce and cut down government size and fees so that at least the private sector could thrive and more jobs created and sustained. People like us, have ask government more than once to reduce its size and at least privitized or created public-private partnerships to help. But I think they are more concerned about the next election and who will vote for them to retain another 4 years in power. It is sad but I think this is the case with our Government. It is not about Principle, it is all about how the People (their voters) rate them!

    So they increase and hike duties and licenses, and grow an armless Police force to an extreme size where you have officers practically on vacation and at work at the same time, because where one can accomplish one thing, you have ten officers for that. You have a force that has more chiefs than indians! Nothing has been done to reduce the cost of living, nothing has been done to at least create another monopoly to contend with CUC, nothing has been done yet!  They talk so much about creating revenue, enlarging our development, increasing the population, and bringing more money into the country. Yet you don’t hear them say anything about reducing expenditures, stepping on people’s toes in order to achieve it, reducing the cost of living. It seems like they are for the wealthy and not the little man.

    It appears nothing has been done to invest on the officers they have now to fight rising crime!  I am afraid the Commissioner of Police with the education he has, him and his policies has not helped one bit. He talks about "if we armed more of our officers, criminals will arm themselves too." Just admit sir, the UK wants to keep their power and hold on the inhabitants of these islands. And are not criminals already armed and smashing down the doors in people homes, holding them at gun point??? Are they not an increased in armed robberies???  And what Police officer in his right mind would go to an armed robbery in progress and he has nothing on his belt to protect him???  Police officers can never do their jobs effectively with such policies!  Yet this Government would allow the COP to call the local officers with street knowledge, illiterate whilst he attend meetings and blame the U.S. influence for our crime! Wow!

    The ship is sinking!  Talk about good governance!  This is our current state of affairs, and it is very disturbing!  I try to be positive, but sorry for the negative comment.

  8. a nah no mouse says:

    No surprise.

    With the amount of serious unsolved crime (and more happening so often) this is NOT a sensible way for so many Top Brass to be spending time.

    And then to spend more time/effort defending why so many were there all day, only adds insult.


  9. Anonymous says:

    To quote from an RCIPS press release dated 31 July 2009 issued by the joint Customs, Immigration and Police Marine Unit –

    Mr Myles gave the following advice:
    • Always ensure that everyone on board the vessel wears a life vest – it is required by law to have a Personal Floatation Device, PFD.

    All UK police forces have (and I’m sure the RCIPS also has) specific requirements for wearing lifejackets, this is from the Professional Standards Unit of one South of England constabulary –

    7.4. In accordance with Marine Unit standing orders, lifejackets will be worn by all persons on board Police Craft.

             – and failure to comply is a disciplinary offence.

    Hardly leading by example, is it?



    • Truthseeker says:

      Crystal clear, warm, lee shore caribbean waters; these are hardly the typical conditions off the UK.

      I suspect you would mock these Officers, HAD they been dressed up in life jackets, in a multi-compartment, essentially unsinkable boat, a few hundred yards from shore, surrounded by dozens of other boats and suited up trained rescue divers, not to mention helicopter support!

      Wearing jackets is not a legal requirement  in the Cayman Islands,and since you have not quoted a local police standing order, then I conclude that your argument is merely that, argumentative. Do you really think that all marine regulations should be the same throughout the world, regardless of actual risk?

      We have had attempts to impose UK copied marine regulations on us before, without consideration of local conditions. I am still trying to figure out what to do with that survival raft that I purchased years ago, in anticipation of complying with proposed UK derived legislation, and I remain unconvinced that the (required) bucket of sand would do much when thrown on the cowling of a burning outboard motor! 


  10. Saltine Cracker says:

    "Ello luv. Got me some pictures of the sinking right. Luvely day here on the island. Wanted to fly in the heli but that was full with other lads from the station. There was some argy-bargy from some of the crew but blimey was this an exciting day on the job."

    Well I’ll upload the photos to my Facebook page later this evening after I’ve had my tea and crumpets. Kiss mommy for me and tell her I might be on the telly for this event. But I hope that bugger Dennie Warren has not spotted us out here (fingers crossed) Cherrio".

    • turtle stew says:

      ha ha ha…absolutely hillarious.  wanted to write something similar to yours, but am not as familiar with the "british" vernacular…

  11. Anonymous says:

    I guess there were so many computers out at seq; that needed the RCIPS IT Specialist to be on duty with a camera too!!!! What a bunch of jokers…….Oh she was just probably there in case any of the blackberries fell overboard whilst taking photos!

  12. Anonymous says:

    Interesting that photos are never shown of the senior officers (and all officers for that matter) who are called out on a frequent basis in the middle of the night to deal with all manner of dangerous and difficult situations while you sleep safe in your beds.

    And by the way – they receive no extra remuneration for that.

    • Anonymous says:

      Well said.  Ch Supt Jones was photographed with Supt Bodden outside the scene of a recent bank robbery within minutes………….. no one commented then. 

      • Anonymous says:

        That’s precisely what he/they are paid for!….not for all day out on a boat. There is an entire Marine Section that are paid to deal with Marine related issues/activities!


    • flipper says:

      Ummh, yeah, real difficult and dangerous after the fact… In other words, showing up at the scene for a photo op 1/2 hour after the crime, not all that dangerous matey!!!

  13. Anonymous says:

     If it was Caymanian officers, not a word would be said by you all.

  14. Biting Ants says:

    I feel it for the RCIPS everything they do seems to draws such negative comments They same unable to recover their respect and tarnished image.Prehaps the sinister process and destructive method that was used to remove the dynamic and capable officers they had, has simply come home to roost. The state of affairs the RCIPS finds itself in however is the sole responsibility of the Governing power who was behind these disasterous changes and it is their now installed leadership that is unable and incapable of dealing with the serious crime situation that is now upon of us. Those who planted the seed of deception and discord must be prepared to eat the bitter fruit from the tree of discontent. What a shame they dont same to have any solutions to resolve this enormous problem other than to use the excuse of corruption as a tool to further dismantle and control the RCIPS.

  15. Patna muchette says:

    As we look at these images one can not help but think, look at where we are at today and shake our heads in dismay. When we see how far this place has been lowered down to where persons with no leadership skills and ability are running this place. We however have no one else to blame but our own corrupt inept and incompetent players who destroyed  and undermining their own capable Caymanians so they could get to the top of the hill, not realizing at the end of the day that the UK & FCO was just playing them like puppets to effect change to reestablish control and now disposing of them like yesterday’s rubbish. We try to to be a star so we fighting tribal war. This is just another isolated incident right ya so!

  16. Herman says:

    "A boat was drifting out to sea with one soul on board "

    Where was the corporeal body?

  17. Anonymous says:

    There is no story here, just mischief making from CNS to snipe at the RCIPS once again.  It all gets boring after a while.  Investegative journalism it is not, three men in a boat ………….. it is their boat after all, it is a police operation and they are in uniform on duty.  Not as though they were in a bar sipping wine watching it all  and hiding away.  Everything went smoothly, so suddenly it becomes a waste of money.  Had it not gone smoothly, and the RCIPS had not been there, you would have all been kicking off.  Is it any wonder they don’t tell the local media anything any more – why bother, they’ll never win.  I think McKeeva may have a point! 

    • Anonymous says:

      There is a story here.  With violent crime on the rise of course the people we pay to fight it are in the spotlight, and rightly so.  This picture speaks a thousand words.  It is not three men in a boat it is three high ranking officials paid from the public purse inappropriately dressed for the situation and obviously hiding behind ‘official duty’.  We have the right to question this and thank you CNS for putting this picture out there.  Hopefully it has caused concern and embarrassment for the commissioner and governor.

    • Anonymous says:

      Au contraire, there is a story here, albeit one that came to light reporting on something else.

      I am a strong supporter of the RCIP, with friends in both the upper and lower echelons, and many close friends in their retired ranks. However, three police officers overseeing safety and security at sea without lifejackets on is akin to a traffic officer involved in a high-speed pursuit without his/her seatbelt fastened.

      The Chief of Police should want to know where the procedures broke down that allowed that to happen. More than likely the evidence will show that they were on a "jolly" as the English like to call it rather than on active duty.

      Just about one year ago five lives were lost at sea in a tragic accident. I, and many others, believe that tragedy could have been prevented if they had been wearing lifejackets on their backs rather than stowed somewhere in the boat.

      As many times as I have seen marine officers out in their new boats, not once have I ever seen them NOT wearing their lifejackets.

  18. Anonymous says:

    What can I say to these goings on? I know : WOW!!!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      "these goings on"?  what have they done wrong exactly? compared to some of the corruption that has come to light in the last year or two this is hardly a scandal.

  19. jzoi says:

    It is rare you see a Cayman Parrot.

    Likewise, it is now becoming rare you see Caymanian officers. Ha!

    Typical of the UK!  They just want to add more officers to the RCIP who just sit down and receive their fat salary each month whilst crime gets no better!  Worse… they have no street knowledge like the local officers.

  20. Old sea dawg says:

     Don’t you know they are above the law, Life vest is for the subjects they rule over, different strokes for the us they will prosecute you if you are found with out safety equipment on board your vessel i can assure you of that. What ashame our leadership in this island seldom lead by example. Book dem Dennie!

    • anonymous says:

      No, but their Life Insurance policy holders have probably taken note…

    • Truthseeker says:

      Old sea dawg

      Do you know that they did not have this equipment aboard?

      Didn’t think so. 

      I agree there is much to critize, but you, in my opinion you diminish your credibility by your less than balanced statements,

    • Anonymous says:

      I must say this not wearing life jackets on the police boat is getting ridiculous now. For those of you who do not know the law …a vessel must have on board the same number of life jackets as the personnel on does not state that it must be worn at all times. It is there and the captain must and should inform the passengers where they are if an emergency should occur.

  21. 345FEDUP! says:

    Lol RCIP swings and misses again.

    Who is leading these clowns?



  22. Anonymous says:

    Nero fiddled as Rome burned.

  23. Laura says:

    Hmmm… CNS seems to be against the Police in making them look bad. Yes Police was needed for safety reasons, but what is news-worthy in explaining who and who was there?

  24. Libertarian says:

    Respect to the officers in the photo!  I have nothing personally against them!  However, three ranking officers just for one scene!  Come on now!

    That is what I mean when I say we have a bloated Police Service. Like the fat government we have now, this is a waste of the tax-payers monies in order to pay and maintain them all!  Yes… we have to fight crime!  But I have always said that 150 officers well equppied, trained, and properly managed, would be able to effectively fight crime than the nearly 400 officers that we have now under this Commissioner of Police, the high ranking officers, and their policies.

    There are literally more chiefs than indians in the Police force!

  25. Anonymous says:

    What a joke ‘safety and security’ they weren’t even wearing life jackets (like the proper sea cops do).   Dem tink we fool fool or wha?

  26. kitti says:

    LOL… ON DUTY???


    I don’t think you needed all those ranking officers on one scene!

  27. Anonymous says:

    If those top cops are familiarizing themselves with the location of the wreck, are they then the ones who will be patroling that area???

    No wonder the morale at the RCIP is below zero.

  28. Anonymous says:

    Great – now could you please get back to work, mark your trip as half a day vacation in your calendars, consider how you have should set an example and at least get photographed wearing life jackets and then figure out how to deal with the really important matters, such as the rising crime and the wreckless driving on our road.

    That is what you are actually getting paid for.

  29. Anonymous says:

    No surprise

  30. Absurdistani says:

    I wouldn’t exactly call this "on-duty".

    Just more sightseeing government fat-cats.

  31. Frank says:

    Of course they were there! A free day on the water. What else do they have to do? *Sarcasm* Aren’t they all supposed to be travelling in seperate boats? LOL

  32. Anonymous says:

    With all these Police boats Grand Cayman has when are they going to deliverthe Cayman Defender which belong’s to the Brac to them to patrol the their waters CNS can you ask them why this has not happened.

    • Anonymous says:

      They are gonna say that they have no one to run it, But im sure if they hire Mr Sheldon Scott back he will do it, Afterall they spent loads of money training him for this just before he retired, (im not getting into the retirement part)….And the next time please use your coverall guys youre not that high class that you cant wear a coverall, Have some respect for the uniform. 

  33. Anonymous says:

    Great picture of ‘on duty’ cops not wearing life vests and taking pictures.  So I really have to wonder just how they would have ‘responded’ to any mishap when they are not properly dressed for the occassion.

    And really the helicopter is needed in the air for the whole time?  Sorry, I’m not buying into that at all.  Complete waste of public money.

    I mean, do the RCIPS think we are so dumb as to not recognise this was just a day trip for the top cops?

    • Anonymous says:

      "And really the helicopter is needed in the air for the whole time?  Sorry, I’m not buying into that at all.  Complete waste of public money."

      The stories wrong, it wasn’t in the air the whole time.  Think you will find it spent more time on the ground than in the air for this. 

      • Anonymous says:

        I was there and saw the helicopter flying around for at least three hours over the site.

        When it wasn’t flying it had only gone back to the airport for more gas!

    • Pending says:

      Of course we are all dumb and stupid..

      They relieved the real marine officers who would have been properly dressed and on duty so they could launch their Operation Lets Take a Few Hours Out The Office to Watch The Kittiwake.

      The other marine officers had nothing else to do so they probably went in the helicopter. No wait, could that have been Big Mac I wonder….


      • Anonymous says:

        Its amazing how you know the fundamental day by day operations of the Marine Unit .The officers of the Marine Unit have been busy almost every day..just because you don’t see a magnificent headline showing what they have done does not mean they are not out there working. Remember they do Marine Conservation,Search and Rescue  and Drug Interdiction. These are the officers paid to protect the borders from Drugs and Guns from entering our Islands. I for one are proud of them and will give them whatever support they need. This was a big event for Cayman and the senior officers were on location  to observe because if an incident happens there they can be familiar with the location when police response may be needed. The life jackets…. the law states a vessel must have enough  life jackets for the amount  of persons on board and they do not have to be worn while on the vessel……….. 

  34. MB says:

     A sightseeing jaunt that all it was but it appears some people cannot same to get around to telling the simple truth about the small things can you imagine the big stuff . Two Chief Inspectors and a Chief Superintendentwow! I haven’t seen this much senior officers at the serious incidents/crimes that occurred last year in Cayman. Poor old Cayman same old mind games being on the loyal subjects. I wonder if Dennie got any pictures of one of those endangered Caymanians in the RCIPS in his photos.