Supporting the RCIPS

| 16/01/2014

As I served for over 40 years in police services I believe I have the experience and background knowledge to offer my congratulations to Police Commissioner Baines for his actions following the alleged robbery on New Years Day. As a senior officer much time is spent on strategic planning with the luxury of having the time for discussion and team input. However, as a serving officer there are times when split second decisions have to be made in order to comply with the oath of office, made to Her Majesty the Queen, that includes a promise to preserve life and protect property.

The incident on the 1st January certainly falls under having to make a split second decision. As this particular case is 'sub judice' I will not repeat the well reported details but here we have an unarmed and off duty police officer about to embark on a social day with family and friends. Suddenly confronted with a situation where allegedly armed criminals are bursting out of a store, and staff and customers have been subjected to a terrifying ordeal. He has to act. There is no time to call for assistance or to hold a briefing.

Commissioner Baines has to resort to urgent and immediate action that will prevent harm to the public, both local and the thousands pouring off a cruise ship. It is highly unlikely that desperados of this nature will respond to a kindly "give it up son, you are under arrest" and if shots were to be fired how many innocents would be injured or killed.

In my opinion he takes the only action appropriate for this very difficult situation and, whilst it is unfortunate that one person is injured, the prevention of further injury or harm to the public fully justifies his courageous actions.

I am in full support of Commissioner Baines, who took charge of  an ailing RCIPS after we had experienced five other commissioners in the previous two years. I am confident that any investigation into his actions on the 1st January will show that his actions were lawful and in the best traditions of the police service.

When I commanded the Drug Task Force (DTF), my team and I were often subjected to criticism from the '9 o'clock army' that had spent a comfortable night in bed and had the benefit of hindsight and time; rather than the operational team that had to make instant decisions in the heat of critical operational engagements that were often highly dangerous. To help build the morale of my team I posted the following anonymous poem in our offices. It is from this poem that the most famous military regiment in the world takes its motto.

'It is not the critic who counts, not the one who points out how the strong man stumbled or the doer of deeds might have done them better.

Credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, who spends his time in a worthy cause. Who, if he wins, knows the triumph of high achievement and who, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.'

Please support your RCIPS. They do not always get it right but a team works better with support and constructive advice rather than being continually subjected to ill informed blogs and criticism.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    DERRICK I AM IN SHOCK That you a man of high respect in these Islands would make such a supportive statement in favor of what the COP did. When you were in the DTF and your officers had the entire country afraid to do wrong they never did such acts. I remember them chasing guys on bicycles whilst they were in cars and we never heard of them hitting or running over the drug guys like they were dogs. Derrick I am much afraid to tell you that I believe the COP's15mins of fame is up and the worst is to come, he is not above the law and XXXX no one in their right mind would have run over some one who was running away from them. Further more Derrick how in God's green earth can you go on record to declare that this commissioner is doing a great job? When his record is by far the poorest we have seen. I only hope that you think before going on record again as it relates to Baines.

    • Hancock says:

      Posts sent at about 6.40 am can be misconstrued at that time of the day following a hangover. For your edification DERRICK is a lifting device encompassing, usually, a tower.You may wish to familiarize yourself with one for future use. May I suggest that you address the points that Mr Haines posted on this news media rather than addressing points you think he made. Better still with your inherent lack of knowledge of the English language, make no posts at all.

    • Dred says:

      All I have to say is you are a complete IDIOT.

      Thank Derrick. Thanks Mr. Baines


  2. And Justice For All says:

    Well said Mr. Haines. Can we now have your comments on the Rabe Welcome incident?

    You know where the young Caymanian officer broke the arm of some guy with a machete in a public place. This was a hand-to-hand confrontation. He did not have the security of being in a vehicle or using a drone.

    The "facts" of this case are well documented on this website for your reference.

    • Coconutz says:

      Yes, Rabe Welcome for OBE, BOE or EOB.  I hear he definitely deserves some sort of a medal.

    • Anonymous says:

      I will defer to others who know the "facts" better than I do, but I believe that the machete was not in the person's possession when Raib broke his arm. If it was, I would have supported Raib breaking his neck.

      • Anonymous says:

        Is there going to be a re-trial?  There must be a strong public interest in that.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, from the reports at the trial it did sound like a terrible case of police brutality.

  3. Anonymous says:

    My question is simple!  If the person had died that Baines ran over, would you think he was right with his actions?  Just think about that for a minute!


    If you still think he would be correct in his actions if the person died, give a thumbs up.

    If you think he would be wrong if the person died then give a thumbs down. 

    The results should be interesting. 

  4. Anonymous says:

    Well Derek, what are you after?  The way the Police Force treated you was atrocious and thank God you hold no animosity and granted it was not this Commissioner who treated you the way they did.  XXXX your success in DTF was never acknowledged or appreciated so ……

    However, with all due respect to you, even if the commission was right to do what he did, there MUST be an investigation.  They wrote the rules and the rules cannot be good for constables and not the COP as the rules say that when force or a weapon is used even against a criminal, it requires investigation to clear that officer of any wrong doing or illegal behaviour (nutshell version).  Therefore, it means that when the investigation is done and the COP was right in his reaction to the event, then we can all shut up and leave it alone.  

    For me its the principle of the matter.  Rules apply to the boss as it does to the servants so he should not feel it is an attack on him personally but that due process is being followed.  Is this not the rule of law or the way it works?   I certainly dont think anyone is suggesting that criminals should have the right but the truth is – Human Rights Laws that we have no choice but to enforce, gives them many rights.  Do we kill them so they do not commit another crime?  I wish sad to say that we could but we cannot otherwise we are no better than the lawless criminal.  

    So stop everyone – defending the COP and see this as due process with no ill will or ill intent.   Otherwise, stop drug testing police constables when they have an accident that they may not have caused and stop investigating if they shoot at or shoot a criminal.  Trust that they reacted as Derek said, in the heat of the moment with the circumstances they are faced with and to prevent a crime.  No investigation, let the Police do what they wish in the name of justice and crime prevention!   That would lead to a healthy society I am sure!

  5. Papa Doyle says:

    Nuff Respect to your DTF Guys Derek you guys had this placeundercontrol you didn't need to run anybody down to catch them. The situation speaks for itself and highlights the current state of lawlessness we live in here on this small little island with the largest police service Per Capita. Sad when the COP has to use his vehicle in order to catch or detain suspects of crime. truly sad??

    • Chris Johnson says:

      From what is I see of the critics of Derek Haines they have failed to address what he actually said. He gave congratulations to the Commissioner in the swift way in which he reacted and I am sure had there been a better alternative to catch the bad guys he would have done so. To date no alternative suggestions to catch the bad guys have been advocated. He further compared the situation with thoseof his own experiences.

      He made no comments addressing praising to force in other areas but wished them the best. Everyone knows you cannot turn back the clock and days in the Haines regime were different. He just supported his commissioner of the day and did an outstanding job.

      Instead of the continued criticism of the RCIP let us think positively and think how we can help and make a difference in our community.

      Finally I can tell you Papa Doyle many the public would have reacted to the incident as the Commissioner did. Clearly you are not one of those people.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Yes, let's all Pat Baines on the back and maybe give another medal in the process, it helps us forget the real problem of increased armed offences and ineffective police work elsewhere.  I really have to question Mr Haines commentary motive.  He was not a witness to the event, but feels he can make judgement based on unsubstantiated reports.  That is after all while we have to have an inquiry.  He must be well aware of this process as basic police work.  Even in war there are rules of engagement.  If the alleged robber was killed in the process this would be a diferent story.  Yes, it would be great if we could eliminate scum armed robbers by killing them, but this is not the society we live in, and as much as many do not like it they have a right to a fair trial

    • Anonymous says:

      Don't criticize Haines…I'm pretty sure he has a better grasp of the subject matter than you do. He makes valid points.


      I also agree with Coconutz commentary as well as the actions of one cannot negate the lack of action of the many

      • Anonymous says:

        Ah, so you are 'pretty sure'  well i guess i should concede defeat then?  You only confirm what i am saying in regard to making judgement based on hear say, which is not how our judicial system works.  My post was an opinion, choose to agree or not.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Well said commentary.  Indeed until you are on the frontlines putting yourself in crisis situations on a daily basis, often times putting your life on the line, you have no idea what critical thinking process occurs and after years of service instinctive reaction and judgment.  Does one hope they do not have to resort to such measures, absolutely, never does an officer take lightly the use of force or deadly force, I know I've been there in other jurisdictions and yes you are subject to an internal investigation as a matter of course and as a professional you understand it but the armchair commentary does not help the force, it creates an us against them element.

    Support our officers, do many of them need additional training absolutely but start by giving them support instead of tearing them apart.

    I wish our RCIPS would institute a ride along program.  It has been used very effectively in the US to enable the general public to see firsthand what an officer goes through on a typical shift.  The public walks away with a much different attitude for sure!  As do the officers by the way.

    Well done Mr. Baines.

  8. Coconutz says:

    My earlier comment (18/01/2014 – 13:17) received a high number of thumbs down, and a troll for good measure.  To be perfectly honest, I couldn't care less – troll away as far as I am concerned.  The fact of the matter is that Mr. Haines, an upstanding citizen by all accounts, is defending the head of an organization that is 7th rate, thereby asking us to be somewhat more understading of its many failures.  I agree with many that the Mr. Baines was very brave in his actions, and that based on all accounts, didn't appear to do anything wrong.  Bravo Mr. Baines!  This however does not negate the fact that the RCIPS is a disgraceful mess, a mess which Mr. Baines ought to be held accountable for.  Just because Immigration, the Legal Department, and Government are just as poorly run as the RCIPS does not excuse Mr. Baines for his failure to build and train a capable police force.  For the most part, the RCIPS is staffed by incompetent, lazy, uninterested, illiterate, 7th rate drunks, men and women who ought not to be trusted wth the cleaning of your toilet – yet we entrust these people with the power of arrest and the power to investigate complex crimes; both which they have spectacularly failed at over and over and over again.  I understand that these days we aretold to applaud anything and everything that remotely even resembles success, but let us all remember that a fart of the trumpet does not a symphony make – and although Mr. Baines' actions were indeed spectacular, they were, among others, just one fart in the wind.  Hope this clarifies matters for those slowers who appear to have difficulties with their comprehension skills.

    Co Co Co Coconutz, Co Co Co Coconutz… 

  9. Anonymous says:

    I, also would like to congratulate Commissioner Baines for his quick thinking and speedy action.  As the Commissioner of Police, he has to be able to make split second decisions in the line of duty and I, personally met Mr. Baines in Miami, where I was travelling with my handicapped daughter and he acknowledged our greeting and offered a ready hand to assist me with a wheelchair. There were a lot of my own Caymanians on the flight with us, who hurried past us  without even acknowledging us much less offerng a hand.  Anyway, what I am saying is that the bloggers tearing him down for his quick thinking and speedy action that New Year's morning, should be grateful for the essage he sent by his actions.  He is in the position of Commissioner of Police to, not only supervise but, to act quickly if the need arose and that morning the need did arise.  So my comments to the Commissioner are, "Thank you for quickly acting to help protect  lives as well as property.  We are fortunate to have you.

  10. Coconutz says:

    Dear Mr. Haines, with all due respect, please do not defend an organization whose overall conduct and modus operandi is indefensible.  Until the RCIPS make wholesale changes to the way it operates, and treats the people of these islands, people ought not to be expected to support an organization that operates several levels below mediocrity.  This 7th rate service ought not to be applauded but rather criticized, even if on seldom occasion it somehow manages to tie its own shoelace.  Yes, I agree that what Baines did was brave and commendable, but let's not build a mountain out of a mole hill – for every RCIPS success there are 100 failures…  Until that ratio is reversed, I would suggest that we all put the pom poms away.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Derek, I think you've missed the point here. Based on what I've seen posted online and heard from my friends the criticism isn't being levelledat Commissioner Baines for his actions but for the lack of action after the incident and the daft comments he made to the press.

    Of all people you should accept that public confidence in RCIPS relies on them being seen to be able to police themselves and when necessary investigate their own conduct but that isn't what happened here. Commissioner Baines leads by example – what sort of example does he set by apparently ignoring all the normal investigation and professional standards protocols after a member of the public was seriously injured by his actions.

    • Anonymous says:

      Shouldn't that be 'trying to ignore' because he did, albeit rather late, announce an investigation? 

    • Anonymous says:


      Well done Derek, woolly minded liberals aren't the paragons of 'freedom and fairness' they like to think they are. Instead they restrict the forces of law and order to ensure that those who would do harm are free to abuse the majority of peace loving people. Thank god people like you apply common sense with professionalism. Without it, the bad will prosper, the good will suffer and the liberals will keep defending the indefensible at our expense.

    • Diogenes says:

      I would absolutely agree that a demonstrably independent investigation of the actions taken and the reasonableness of force used is appropriate in the circumstances, in exactly the same way as there would be one in any decent police force where one of its members used a significant amount of force resulting in injury of a suspect.  Unfortunately an investigation by subordinates of the officer under investigation is hardly that.  XXXX

  12. Hear hear says:

    I respect Her Excellency very much, but can we have Derek for the next Guv??

    • Anonymous says:

      Nope..that spot is reserved for Baines…Duncan said  so before he left…

  13. 4Cayman says:

    Not that we are back street drivers, we just want an island we can live and work in a safe envorinment. Just look at te headlines today regarding robbery at ATM. We have over 400 RCIPS officers who rather give tickets for coupons and tint than to patrol on foot, bicycles and cars where there are known hot spots for crime. For example, Wellies was robbed twice in less than a week. Why is that? No police presence.

    although Baines did a great job on January 1st, we need more of this action from "all" officers so that criminals are aware that the police force is a reckon and is here to stay! 


    well done Commish!

  14. Anonymous says:

    It is comforting to see that the Police Commisioner has the courage to tackle an incident such as this – the man should be congratulated from every quarter.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Well said Derek and spot on.  Whilst all armchair critics are entitled to their opinion, they can never, ever understand the true realities of life on a front line but seem more than happy to pontificate from perceptions gained from books and films and garnished by prejudice.  Congratulations to the Commissioner and ALL emergency services workers (police/paramedic/fire) for their contributions in making our society a safer place to live.




  16. Len Layman says:

    Well said!

  17. Anonymous says:

    i think the above viewpoint is excellent, thanks Derek for the insight and i personally have to agree with everything you've said.  i would even take it to the point that the injury, as unfortunate as it was makes a strong point, that the Police Service is willing to do what must be done in a split second to keep the public safe, at the expense of those breaking the law voilently. 

  18. Anonymous says:

    Well said.

    Far too many of our esteemed bloggers seem to believe that TV shows such as" Law and Order" and "CSI" and similar, represent a truthful portayal of solving crime – but they are called "dramas" for a reason and the reality is far far different and much more difficult when split second decisions have to be made.




    • Anonymous says:

      Try "the first 48 hours" for non-drama police work.

      Don't get me wrong, from what I know (what's been reported) it seems CoP did his job….though an investigation is still warranted….to document and to follow best practice.

  19. freedom says:

    Well said Hainesy.. – 9 o'clock solider.. 🙂

  20. Anonymous says:

    Well written Derek! Far too many observer back seat drivers voice opinions here in areas they are not qualified to do so. They have no knowledge of the facts, were not present at events as took place, but they know it all.

    i also was not present at this event, however from what was reported and subject to the investigation, it would appear Mr Baines deserves a pat on the back.