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Wednesday 22 May 2019
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Family calls for independent probe

Cop involved in fatal two-vehicle smash up

The family of Rishi ‘Skills’ Sankar yesterday called for an independent investigation into the accident which caused his death, last Sunday.

Family members say in addition to the normal police investigation which takes place after an accident, they want an independent probe as the other driver involved in the fatal two-vehicle smash up, was a senior police officer. Skills, 35, a tradesman, was not married and had no children.He died from injuries sustained from the accident at Union, Orange Valley on April 29.

The call was made by Skills’ sister, Kamini Sankar, at his funeral service held at the family’s 4th Street Dow Village, California home, yesterday. In delivering his eulogy, Sankar said witnesses were afraid to come forward. She said they wanted closure and wanted to know the circumstances under which her brother was killed, even if he was at fault.

Another sister, Radica Sankar, said they were told by witnesses that other driver would have slipped up and caused the accident, but are not now willing to give statements to the Couva police who are investigating his death.

Couva South MP Rudranath Indarsingh who attended the funeral service and the cremation at the Waterloo Cremation site, said the family, who are his constituents, have asked him to intervene on their behalf because of a perceived lack of transparency in the process.

Two police officers, ASP Pierre of the Couva Police Station and Cpl Cumberbatch of the Community Police Service also attended the funeral service, yesterday.

Indarsingh called on Ag Commissioner of Police Stephen Williams to launch an inquiry into the vehicle accident.

“I am also calling on the head of the Police Complaints Authority (PCA) David West to commence his own investigations into the professional conduct of the investigating officers, to ensure the Sankar family get all the details surrounding the accident, even if such details points to Skills negligence and he is found to have been at fault.”

The Opposition MP is also appealing to Williams to ensure the family is provided with an interim report as soon as possible, “which should at least indicate a summary of all the relevant information regarding the collision, as well as, the opinions of the investigating officers.”

Indarsingh said when he visited the family’s home on Wednesday to offer his condolences, he was told by the family that they were yet to be advised of the details of the circumstances surrounding the accident which claimed the life of their loved one.

“There appears to be a lack of transparency and openness in the actions of the police in the death of Skills, because of the involvement of a police officer. This family just want closure,” Indarsingh said.

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