Attorney urges CoP: Be wary of comments

Attorney Ulric Skerritt
Attorney Ulric Skerritt

The attorney for one of the policemen detained for allegedly helping criminal gangs is urging the Commissioner of Police to be circumspect in his comments, especially with regard to active investigations.

The policeman, a relative of former police commissioner Stephen Williams, was released on Wednesday, after 14 days in custody with an apology from his peers and told there was no evidence to continue to hold him.

Attorney Ulric Skerritt, who represented the policeman, said while he understands that the commissioner wants to bring an end to criminal gang activity and tidy up the police service, he has to be careful in what he says.

Skerritt, a former police officer, said the commissioner publicly boasted of the arrest and detention of his client, and even issued a statement in which he identified the policeman, although charges had not been laid, “in an attempt to ridicule” the police officer.

“That cannot be right,” Skerritt said, adding that it appeared that his client was deemed guilty until proven innocent.

“We knew that there was no evidence from the start,” Skerritt added.

He said the entire ordeal has affected his client, who is now wary of the job.

“He has to go back out there and work at his best in the fight against the criminal elements, but he was labelled as one. There was no attempt to protect him,” Skerritt told Newsday in a telephone interview.

Griffith’s statements were made after a High Court judge refused to discharge an order of detention for the policeman.

He said the court’s ruling, which laid down guidelines for the police to use as a tool when detaining people under the Anti-Gang Act, was a significant milestone for the police.

The statement identified the policeman by name and said the court’s decision showed the police were obeying the rule of law in protecting law-abiding citizens. The statement also said Griffith assured that the TTPS will do its job, no matter who is accused.


"Attorney urges CoP: Be wary of comments"

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