Monday, October 19, 2020

Hanna-Martin: Latest Police Shooting Raises Questions

Englerston MP Glenys Hanna-Martin is calling on Minister of National Security  Marvin Dames to give an account for the police shooting of Jamal Bodie, which she said, took three days before police confirmed to the public that a police shooting occurred near Windsor Park.

Police reports say on Friday at 8 pm, officers approached a male fitting a description given. As they confront the suspect, the man pulled a firearm from his waist and pointed it in the direction of the police. The officers then discharged their service weapons in the direction of the suspect, injuring him. The man later succumbed at the hospital.

But the man’s fiancé Deshanna Cleare told the Tribune that police did not inform the family of the shooting and it was only revealed on Monday, when she positively identified him at the morgue.

Cleare said in her search to find him after he did not return home, an officer at Central Detective Unit told her to “go to the dead house tomorrow and then come back to her.”

Hanna-Martin said the events surrounding Jamal’s identification is “totally unacceptable, very concerning and raises many questions as to the facts and circumstances.”

“We demand transparency and accountability in the exercise of police powers. We insist on the protection of the law for the security of all citizens,” Hanna-Martin said.

Hanna-Martin called for an independent body to investigate allegations of excessive force and alleged abuses by police, to review existing policies and practices, and explore alternative strategies.

“We face a grave risk that community confidence and trust are being eroded and compromised; these are essential components to maintaining the peace, social balance and a healthy democracy.

She said  body cameras must be urgently mandated.

Commissioner of Police Paul Rolle said he thought a statement had been released earlier n the matter and summed it up as a miscommunication. Rolle apologized and said, “there was no attempt to hide anything.”

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