Police refute alleged assault victim’s claims

On Tuesday, we spoke with a young woman of Placenica Village, who told us that she was violently assaulted by three police officers, attached to the Placencia sub-formation. As we mentioned, the matter is before the courts and so the woman chose not to speak formally with the media. But now, she says, she’s ready to break her silence. Mary Andrews says that on Friday morning around 3:30, she was with her sister, along with some friends, when they decided to make a pit stop. That’s when she says three Police Officers, drove up to them, called her by her sister’s name and proceeded to arrest her.

Mary Andrews – Assault Victim:
vlcsnap-2013-05-17-20h49m01s5He just came up to me, called me my sister’s name.  I said “I’m not Peggy,” which is my sister’s name.  He said, “Let’s go. You’re going with us.”  I said “I’m not Peggy. Why are you taking me in?”  My sister was right there.  The driver of the Police truck jumped out of the  truck and started hitting me with a baton, which is the Police club, multiple times.  I fell to the ground, and they slammed me up into the truck.  {They] started beating my up in the truck.  The Policewoman got on top of me, started choking me, and threatened that she was going to kill me.. I tried to get up ’cause I couldn’t breathe, and the Police just kept beating me. All the way to the Station she had me, strangling me down in the pan of the truck. We got to the Police Station.  There was a misunderstanding there where she was still hitting me in the police Station.  They locked me up.  They refused at first to let me use the bathroom.  They refused for me to seek medical attention.  I was in a lot of pain.  They wouldn’t have me go to the doctor until later that evening.

According to Andrews, the Police did not tell her why she was being arrested and that even now, it still is not clear.

Mary Andrews – Assault Victim: 
vlcsnap-2013-05-17-20h48m16s73Up to now they’ve told me nothing about [why I was taken in].  They said nothing.  They kept silent about it. I got into the station.  I tried to ask them, “Why are you doing this to me?” Another Police officer came and asked them why was I there.  One of the Police answered and said, “Oh, for fighting with her sister.”  The Police officer then said to the other Police, “How come you only have her locked up?” It’s just unfair.  They took me for my sister.  I like my sister.
I have no problem with my sister.

But charges have been levied against Andrews, those charges though have nothing to do with the reason she was apprehended, but all stem from what Police claim occurred during that apprehension.

Mary Andrews – Assault Victim:
vlcsnap-2013-05-17-20h48m29s207Later on that night the female Police Officer came in and charged me for resisting arrest, which I wasn’t resisting arrest, [and] for disorderly conduct.  I’m wondering how come I’m the only one being arrested for threatening words against the Police, which I never did. 
I got my doctor paper filled out and everything.  I got some pain-killers, and some medicine so that I could sleep.  I was in a lot of pain.  They refused to let me seek medical attention at first’
I still have a lot of bruises on my skin, especially on my leg.  I still have a lot of pain in my ankle at night. 

Andrews argues that witnesses who saw the beating take place have come out to validate her account of the incident, but they are now being threatened by Placenica Police to not testify on her behalf. Speaking with her off camera, she informed us that that morning, her sister was involved in a minor altercation and that all she did was try to get her sister away from the situation. Today, we contacted Inspector Mark Flowers, Commanding the Placencia Police Sub-formation; he refutes every single claim by Andrews. He told us that at around 2am, Police were informed of disorderly behavior near Tipsy Tuna Bar. Their investigation then led them to the airstrip, about 2 miles outside Placencia and that’s where they intercepted Andrews. He claims that Andrews was involved in a fight that night and that while at the airstrip, a young man tried to intervene and he was stabbed below the elbow, allegedly by Andrews. Police have since confiscated that weapon. What Flowers says came next, completely challenges Andrew’s account. According to Flowers, while Andrews was being apprehended, she quickly became confrontational with Police. Then when she was in the pan of the mobile truck, she reportedly tried to kick the female officer out of the moving truck. Now when we spoke with Andrews today about those allegations, she says that the WPC was on top of her, which interrupted her breathing and that all she did, after pleading with the woman to get off was try to get her off. Inspector Flowers informed us that that police officer is now on sick leave, due to injuries sustained. He added that when Andrews was taken into the station, she attacked the officer again, which caused the other two male officers to intervene. Again, Andrews denies all these allegations, adding that she never stabbed anyone nor was she involved in a fight. But even further, Inspector Flowers said that one of Andrews’ sisters, who is an officer, was at the station from the time Andrews was taken in at around 4am. But, according to Andrews, her sister’s shift was at 8am, as she is pregnant and not allowed to work night shifts. Now this story couldn’t be more conflicting than it is, with he says, she says. So, a judge will have to decide the outcome of this case. We note that Andrews is not being charged for the allege stabbing of the young man. And when we asked Police why? They stated that the young man does not want to press charges. Andrews was additionaly charged for harm, aggravated assault, and assaulting a police officer.

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