Police have charged their own in internal investigations. Late on Thursday evening the Police Department’s Professional Standards Branch updated several ongoing investigations and announced that charges have been laid in several recent incidents. Regarding the two Belize City youths who told their story to PLUS News and other media this week concerning alleged Police abuse in the village of Independence on Easter Monday, the Department says that the statements recorded from Adrian Daniels, 19, and a minor whose name was called in the release but which we withhold, have been forwarded to Southern Regional Commander Robert Mariano and PSB Commander ACP Noel Leal. A formal investigation is being conducted by Commander Mariano in Independence at this time. The young men in question and several others from the village were rounded up and in the case of Daniels and the minor held in Police custody and terrorized for several hours for no apparent reason.
In related news, disciplinary charges have been laid against two officers in separate but linked incidents. Constable #132 Frank McNeal was on Thursday placed on interdiction after a report of extortion was made against him last week by one Anna Mae Nembhard. Constable McNeal has also been disciplinarily charged with acting to the prejudice of good order and discipline in connection with the incident.
Meanwhile, Belize City businesswoman Carol James reports that her fiancé was wrongfully detained by corrupt police officers who wanted to “shake him down” for $2,000 to make an unlicensed firearm charge go away – despite his showing them his partner’s license for the weapon. James, who was out of the country at the time, had to fly back home and confront police, whom she claims also stole valuable jewelry from her room when they conducted a search on March 28. Police say that the fiancé in fact handed over his keys – for house, business and gate – to a neighbor identified as Elaine Arnold. The matter remains under investigation…
And finally, while a young woman in the village of Bullet Tree Falls in Cayo withdrew allegations of rape against police in that area, one constable, Eldrid Thomas, was assessed with disciplinary charges of two counts of Act to the Prejudice of Good Order and Discipline and one count of Drinking Intoxicating Liquor while on duty. He has been placed on immediate interdiction.