Cops go quiet on crime

| 30/09/2010

(CNS): Although sources tell CNS that an attempted robbery took place at the Domino’s Pizza Parlour in Mary Street last night, the police say that cannot offer the public any information.  It is unclear what time the incident took place, how the robbers were foiled in their attempts or how the men or women were armed.  Police told CNS this morning that they were aware of an incident but were unable to offer information for the public and advised us to call the press liaison officer. Recent instructions from RCIPS officials to the media advise that outside of office hours the duty sergeant or inspector at George Town police station would be the source of information for media distribution. However, officers have become increasingly reluctant to talk with the press, making it difficult for local media to keep the public informed. (Photo Dennie Warren Jr)

This is at least the second time that robbers have targeted the small takeaway restaurant, but with no informationcoming from the police we are unable to say if anyone was hurt or the property was damaged. In June masked armed men crashed through the store’s front doors and left with a small amount of cash.
 
With the increasing breakdown of communication between police and media, CNS is calling on members of the public to help us keep the community informed. Please contact our news room with any information about crimes taking place in your neighbourhood on crimedesk@caymannewsservice.com or 926 6816.
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Comments (36)

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  1. Watchmiwatchu says:

    It doesn’t appear to me that there is a "breakdown of communication" between the police and society, but an utter reluctance of the police to properly communicate with society, a deliberate disrespect of the country’s entitlement to knowledge regarding police and criminal activity in the country.

    I am glad to see that someone among those in the Islands is realising that the people have to start holding the government responsible to the people. The freedom of speech and freedom of press are synonymous and neither requires a written application in any truly democratic country.  The freedom of information in the broadest concept does not require that there is a paper trail in order for the information to be provided, but a honest response from the person/entity being inquired of, in this instance the basic questions posed by the media to report to the general public.

    If the police is now, in any manner, shortfalling the public of knowledge, i.e. no longer reports to the public or is not held accountable to the public, please rest assured you are on the doorstep of a police state (if you’re not already under its roof).

    Now add to this the comment that I posted recently regarding the information requested of the police by a community resident in a local neighbourhood and the response received.

    I also read (with great confusion) the article in today’s newspaper "3 Teens Nabbed in WB bakery heist". This article had been supported by local witness reports, however the police did not confirm if those arrested had anything to do with the robbery at the bakery, which leaves us to question why the police will not clarify the relationship of those arrested to the offence that had just been committed. We don’t need to know the details surrounding their investigation.

    These examples are the result of lack of a reporting staff, my people. These examples are testament that something is drastically wrong in the country that you live in.

    If there is some difficulty with the police advising the public of their progress in the fight against crime, perhaps we could have the Premier’s press secretary issue the press reports and that way they would have something to do to earn their salary while the Premier continues to issue his own press releases.  But however the government decides that it will advise us, let us make sure that it understands that it HAS to.

    • Watchmiwatchu says:

       The sentence should have read:

      "These examples are not the result of lack of a reporting staff, my people."

      Thanks for the edit.

  2. TCM29 says:

    Enough is enough, and we have made a decision not to visit Cayman this year until you get the crime under control. In the past few days a bank, bakery and pizza shop have been robbed; combined with the rest of what I read, I’ve decided your once beautiful island has gone the way of major US cities. Our November vacation will be elsewhere.

    • Caymanin to the Bone says:

      TMC 29 you must be living under a rock where there is no crime.  Shut up putting down Cayman.

    • Anonymous says:

      It is still not as bad as you seem to make out, interested to know where you would pick to go in November.  A lot of us down here do not any contact or experience that makes us feel unsafe.

    • Anonymous says:

       

      No where is safe

      Go JAMAICA crime is all over now.

      Safe vacation.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Ok, here’s the issue RCIPS needs to stop tailoring job descriptions to suit an individual! I am sure all media personnel can remember Deborah Denis out at whatever time to cover issues from murders to robberies to drug burns u name it. An individual arrives here in Cayman and bcus they do not think they should be disturbed at 2am; they request a change in policy; which was happily granted bcus Baines don’t want his UK people working to earn their salary! Come on get a grip the PR officer recieves a call out allowance doubled with Comp Time so that they can provide the public with information 24/7! Imagine not even RCIPS personnel are kept abrest with media issues anymore so there is no surprise the public isn’t. Its a damn shame. 2 more robberies tonight and d PR office is closed! David Baines u need to do better and stop tailoring jobs for ur buddies.

    • Anonymous says:

      And they take their comp time when?  Then they are disturbed again by a media demanding information so that they can feed their commercial activity on this website.  When the information was put on, all you people on here did was moan, or slag off the RCIPS / Govt etc.  It doesn’t lead to any ground breaking information from the public, so all in all, they are better just getting on with the job.

  4. Anonymous says:

    12:40.  Are you joking to imply that the Police are doing a great job and how dare people say otherwise. Please spare us, they are not performing nor functioning the way they should be.

  5. Me says:

    CNS I think you may have another milestone in the making here:  

    With the increasing breakdown of communication between police and media, CNS is calling on members of the public to help us keep the community informed. Please contact our news room with any information about crimes taking place in your neighbourhood on crimedesk@caymannewsservice.com or 926 6816.

    Excellent idea!  I’m sure people will use this!

  6. Richard Wadd says:

     We have always had a "Hush order" of sorts. There are countless crimes and incidents WE all are aware of happening over the years, that have never reached the Press.

      Perhaps we will see a difference in the performance of the Police if we return Pedophiles and other suchoffenders back to office.

      But we will see far greater results if we follow our European cousins, and STAND AND MAKE OUR VOICES HEARD.

      The time has come for UNITY among the people of these islands, not just the Natives, but ALL of those who reside here.

      When we are seen as a people of STRENGTH and UNITY, only then will our Leaders do as WE demand.

      We must put ‘The Fear of GOD’ back where it belongs, in the hearts of Politicians and Criminals alike. 

  7. Anonymous says:

    Perhaps the RCIPS needs a new checklist according to CNS and various commenters:

    First, issue press release.

    Second, respond to scene to speak with parties involved. Then update press release with the nationality of the suspect(s). If Caymanian, determine if they are "only" paper Caymanians and when they got a status grant. Speculate if the suspects vote UDP or PPM.

    Third, blame poor parenting for general societal deterioration.

    Forth, make a blog post expressing general concern for the victims and add a religious element. (ie..  I’ll pray that the poor victim recovers quickly.) Wait for at least one "thumbs down" comment from the public before proceeding.

    Fifth, make excuses for the criminal actions of the perpertrators. Justify their thieving and violent ways on poor job opportunities. Add a bit of wailing and gnashing of teeth.

    Sixth, kick all expats off the island.

    Seventh, blame it all on the civil service. Call for the resignation of someone – police commissioner, governor, premier, MLA. Pick anyone, no matter how irrelevant his/her job is to the event at hand.

    Eight, release security camera footage to press. Don’t bother to have investigating officer review the footage prior.

    Ninth, have medics assess patients. Update press with otherwise nature and extent of any injuries. Be sure to include juicy details about patients’ medical histories.

    Tenth, have fellow officers establish a cordon to attempt to contain the area. Utilize special units such as K9 tracking dogs, DTF, Marine, or helicopter. Conduct an area search and speak with potential witnesses. Make checks on known offenders and those with history of prior criminal acts fitting the modus operandi. Follow up any information regarding suspect vehicles in area, conducting island-wide stops of vehicles matching any available relevant descriptions. Have crime scene technicians process scene for any available forensic evidence. And all of that other boring police stuff…

    • Anonymous says:

      You spelt fourth wrong.

      • Anonymous says:

        The facts speak for themselves. As long as you can understand thats what matter. Don’t you worry. Some known academics make more "muck" of things than people who left out a letter, a punctuation mark or a capital

      • Spelling Bee. says:

        Spell fourth wrong, youdont have anything to do or what?  Beside to have spelling Bee contest on every comment.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Chances are they have charged no one from the robbery yesterday, this one ,nor the bank and have nothing to say expect that this occured and we are standing there with our winky in our hand sprinkling into the wind. We are getting wet, but no shots have been fired and no one was hurt. The chopper got some hours in and that should be measured as a great success in itself that it was out flying on our dime.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Wait up folks. Give them a break, they are still dealing with the two armed robberies that have occured in the last few days, plus traffic problems. They are over-worked and over-whelmed XXXXX, so please give them a break – how can you expect them to do this much Police work in a week! Given what we have been told it would take over a 1000 Officers to make a dent with how the department operates – but on a bright note that would include ex DTF!

  10. Dred says:

    I’m not surprised at this at all. My only surprise is how long they have taken to get to this point.

  11. Say It Aint So! says:

    The media sometimes forgets that there is protocol that has to be observed with the way information is dispensed. Its important it comes from the right source. Accuracy of the information is far more important than just getting loose information and then turning it into a story.

    • Think Fast says:

      If you were to ask the po-po what that protocal is do you think that any of them would know the answer? 

  12. Anonymous says:

    So much for freedom of the press.Good luck CNS.

  13. kissmebackfoot says:

    Cops go quiet on crime.  Officers, just say it is too embarassing to release the information to the public.  Please be honest.

  14. Anonymous says:

    When I came to Cayman 15 years ago, there was a daily police report in the newspaper whose name I don’t want to mention here…  top-left corner on page 2… We had some crime – but nothing like at this moment… It was always fun and interesting to read it… The police report would state that "two European female visitors were asked by the police to dress properly at the beach"… Those were the days… 🙂

    Nowadays, a daily police report would require a few extra pages in the newspaper, I suppose…

  15. Anonymous says:

    Want a story. My daughters apartment in prospect park was burglarised and they stole stuff. How does publishing that help anything.

    • Anonymous says:

      was it too much trouble to provide any further info such as what was stolen?? help us help you… or rather help your poor unfortunate daughter.

      The more we discuss the cancerous sporead of crime on this Island can only help, surely?

  16. Anonymouse says:

    If the Police cant solve  crime, how can you expect them to report what they dont know?

    They are usually the last to get to the scene so the Public know the facts long before they do anyway.

    If I may quote some of the Commissioners customary rhetoric, this is just police Tit for Tat with the public.

    To CNS: Nothing beats a good story and the winner always gets it first. Keep up the pressure, sooner or later the police need to understand that we the Public pay their salaries.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Surely the ‘pressing issue’ with the earlyreslease of such news stories is for the media to provide us the public with the information of crimes as soon they can, hopefully we might even be able to assist before it all goes cold??

    Please remember that it is not just robberies but vicious attacks on persons that we do not hear about now from the RCIP.

    It is of course in the interest of the RCIP to hide or mask the true crime figures, believe me we do not hear the half of it!!

    I for one hope that we can all get behind the media and help pursue a better system of news release from the RCIP – without the pressure from the media we would all hear nothing.

  18. Anonymous says:

    The police wants the public to give them information when they keeping info from us, hows that suppose to work?

    • The rock says:

      Release our RCIP who defended themselves. Give our RCIP cops on indefinite leave with NO CONVICTIONS, THEIR job backl

      Apologize to them

      Monetary Compensation equal to judge Henderson’s $2 million

      we need to feel sure our police is being treated right before we can trust Police Administration and corporate with RCIP across the board.  Another investigation is not going to help.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Instead of worrying about getting this sordid story out correctly to the public first thing in the morning -which is of no use to the public anyway – why does the media not take some sort of investigative steps to see why there is so much nepotism and corruption in the government hiring process especially in Cayman Brac.

  20. Anonymous says:

    I would not exactly call it "a breakdown of communication between the police and the media"  – they have a press liaison officer and there is no reason why the media cant wait to get their information from them – why should some small time officer speak to the press and then possibly say the wrong thing or be misquoted. The police are taking/getting enough flack from the public as it is about them not doing their jobs etc etc – yada yada yada. Give them a break it must be a horrible job under the present criminal conditions – remember the police are only human and are someone’s child, mother, father, aunt, uncle etc. I am sure not knowing what happened at this robbery first thing this morning changes nothing and we can therefore wait until the media gets the right story later in the day.

    • Pending says:

      " why should some small time officer speak to the press and then possibly say the wrong thing or be misquoted"

      Uh….its  the Press Liason Officer’s job to provde the media with information, DUH!

      And yeah lets wait and wait and wait. Nothing gets done by waiting around.

      Oh wait, nothing ever gets done.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Providing information is a two way street.   If police want information from the public, they must provide information to the public.

    The police are obviously defensive and are closing ranks.  In this time of increasing crime, that is an interesting message to be sending to the public.

    • Anonymouse says:

      Passing information to the Police is a one way street. You pass info to them and they send it on to whoever they want.

    • Anonymous says:

       After reading these comments on CNS, I wouldn’t answer anyone either.  Thank God, I don’t work in the Police Force.  I would say to heck with this and quit.  You are trying to solve a crime and has to play PR officer to CNS and commenters who are just going to criticize you no matter what you do.  That is demoralizing.

      On another note, why are Police going into a gun battle with batons.  I didn’t know batons could stop bullets.  It’s time for armed police.