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Sunday 26 May 2019
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Law Association calls for probe of La Brea cops: Tragedy could have been avoided

Law Association of TT building
Law Association of TT building

The Law Association has joined the call for a full investigation into the police’s handling of the complaint of domestic violence made by Abigail Chapman, less than a week before she was murdered.

Chapman, 42; her daughter, Olivia, 15; Olivia’s friend Michaela Mason, 14; and their landlord Michael Scott, were brutally murdered in La Brea on Tuesday.

Chapman’s mother Christine Jones said her daughter reported to police she was choked and threatened with a knife by the killer.

The Police Complaints Authority (PCA) has initiated an investigation into possible neglect of duty by the police and the Coalition Against Domestic Violence also supported an investigation into the cops’ conduct.

Joining this call yesterday was the Law Association, in a statement issued Friday.

“It is not difficult to conclude that had an arrest been made promptly, and charges laid, the tragedy which unfolded within days may have been avoided.

“Police officers are frontline defenders of the rule of law. All reports of domestic violence must be taken seriously and acted upon. Police officers must be sensitised out of misguided notions that domestic violence is a private affair in which the state should be slow to intervene.”

In its statement, the association said this latest massacre vividly demonstrates, all acts of violence by one person against another, however initially minor, are the state's business.

“The police service must honour its duty to protect and serve all citizens.”

The association called for an immediate assessment of any deficiencies in the response of the police and for it to be used to establish binding protocols and the provision of necessary resources to “ensure that tragedies like this are not repeated.”

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