Police to get new powers to fight gun crime

Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite today vowed to introduce legislation to give the Royal Barbados Police Force (RBPF) additional powers to arrest the worrying wave of gun violence.

Yesterday’s climax of Crop Over was marred by a shooting episode on Spring Garden, St Michael that left 20-year-old Taried Junior Rock dead and 20 other people injured.

In addition, there was a stabbing in Waterford, St Michael, resulting in the assailant being shot by police.

Even as he reiterated an earlier pledge to better equip law enforcers to rid the streets of illegal firearms, Brathwaite announced his intention to introduce legislation allowing for the interception of the communication of suspected criminals.

“I intend to work with the relevant minister. Let’s take a paper to Cabinet so we can have that [legislation]. It makes no sense in 2017, us having the resources available and not being able to utilize such facilities,” Brathwaite, who is also Minister of Home Affairs, said.

He also said he was contemplating measures to prevent people who are on bail from linking with criminal gangs.

“I am not sure how to frame it as yet, [but] . . . we have to really do something about these criminal groups and try to find some methodology . . . that in fact, we can prevent him [person on bail] from associating with certain areas or certain individuals,” he revealed.

In addition, Brathwaite said consideration was being given to measures for the protection of witnesses willing to testify against perpetrators.

To this end, he said, his ministry would examine Britain’s Criminal Justice Act of 2003 which modernized many areas of that country’s criminal justice system by amending laws relating to police powers, bail, disclosure, allocation of criminal offences, prosecution appeals, and double jeopardy among other areas.    

“We have a few witnesses who are a bit concerned to cooperate with us. I have had the research done over the last week or so and we need to find some methodology so that persons can testify anonymously. And I believe that if we do that, then we will see more persons willing to cooperate,” Brathwaite said.

Contending that the youth can play a pivotal role in stemming the crime wave, the minister said Government would act to get young people involved in productive activities.  “We do still have too many firearms in the hands of young gang members and we will provide more resources to remove these guns from our streets, but equally, move more of these young men and women into productive vocations. This will not happen immediately and will require all hands on deck,” an under-pressure Brathwaite said.

“What I just said to some of my colleagues in law enforcement is that this cannot just be a legalistic response . . . . I would like to see the Youth Service being given more funding so that they can take more of our young people into their programmes.”

Revealing that there were approximately “16 gangs or troublesome youth groups in a very small area” in Black Rock, the Freundel Stuart administration’s principal legal advisor said there was a need to visit the trouble spots to determine the level of poverty and unemployment and to assist more families.

Last night’s gun violence has caused particular concern to the administration of the island’s sole general hospital.

Stating that the incident has taught him some crucial lessons, Chief Executive Officer of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) Dr Dexter James called for police security on wards which house victims of gun violence.

“[Lessons] include a need for us to strengthen the security arrangements within the Accident & Emergency Department and on the particular surgical ward where persons involved in shooting incidents would be warded,” Dr James told Barbados TODAY this morning, adding that he would hold “very urgent discussions,” with Acting Commissioner of Police Tyrone Griffith to support the QEH in that regard.

He revealed that that five of the 20 people who were shot remained hospitalized, one of whom had to undergo emergency surgery.

He added that the QEH was fortunate that there were ten patients only at A&E during the mass casualty situation, and that there was sufficient blood to treat the injured.

Meanwhile, Minister of Culture Stephen Lashley has issued a strong warning to the people behind the Kadooment Day violence.

“I hope that those persons responsible would now see that this festival is bigger than them and they should be assured that once they commit an offence, they would feel the full brunt of the law. There is no mistaking about that,” Lashley cautioned.

He said the Crop Over festival has grown and it was Government’s obligation to keep it safe.


72 Responses to Police to get new powers to fight gun crime

  1. Kevin Gibson
    Kevin Gibson August 9, 2017 at 12:35 pm

    No one is thinking the people on this island need someone creating a job sector for the young besides tourism or it will just more and more of. This to come.

    • Michelle Griffith
      Michelle Griffith August 9, 2017 at 2:03 pm

      These people could got jobs all around them like bush,they don’t want no work.

  2. Lionel Gittens
    Lionel Gittens August 9, 2017 at 12:54 pm

    A job sector. The young people don’t want to work.

    • Loraine Bovell Warner
      Loraine Bovell Warner August 9, 2017 at 1:58 pm

      A guy came by me to do work and was talking about a young guy who ask him for work
      He said the guy worked the first two days and tell him he only for the month to get enough money to buy weed so he can turn it over that he ain’t about working for nobody in the hot sun when he can make more money selling weed
      So you see the mentality

    • Lionel Gittens
      Lionel Gittens August 9, 2017 at 2:19 pm

      Loraine Bovell Warner thanks for completing for me. Money but not work.

    • Lionel Gittens
      Lionel Gittens August 9, 2017 at 3:38 pm

      That’s the type of work they prefer. So don’t go around blaming anyone. It’s a world wide thing.

  3. Marcia Applewhaite
    Marcia Applewhaite August 9, 2017 at 12:55 pm

    Head just ain’t brain,give the police the power to pick these youngsters off the streets and hand them over to the task force and defence force to mandatory clean up this island from parish to parish.Debush and plant nice flowers and palms all over the island.What is soo hard about putting their energies to good use.government buildings needs sprucing up,let them work from 6-2.No need to pay them,they will get a good understanding of how hard it is to work for them to wreck a whole country.A good 6 months hopefully will change their attitudes.

    • Christopher Carter
      Christopher Carter August 9, 2017 at 1:04 pm

      Put them to do some farming a lot of waste land in Barbados

    • Lennox Phillips
      Lennox Phillips August 9, 2017 at 2:45 pm

      They still work together

    • Lennox Phillips
      Lennox Phillips August 9, 2017 at 2:46 pm

      I remember when the police cut down 4 of them and it was on front page,bad boy cool down

    • Cavil Best
      Cavil Best August 9, 2017 at 2:47 pm

      I have a plan for all of those young offenders.

    • Wayne August 9, 2017 at 5:45 pm

      Are you serious? The last straw was you don’t have to pay them, That is the way that these youths see as how society views them and they act accordingly,

    • Carlos Mason
      Carlos Mason August 9, 2017 at 6:52 pm

      Agree,the courts should make greater use of community service.

  4. Stephen Knight
    Stephen Knight August 9, 2017 at 12:56 pm

    Yeah no one seems to have this mindset of creating jobs I do not know why. Some of these politicians still have the slave mentality that we got to work in hotels in resorts instead of creating our own.

    • Bentley Williams
      Bentley Williams August 9, 2017 at 3:04 pm

      So how does a politician get an individual to create his or her own employment?

  5. Tony Webster August 9, 2017 at 12:58 pm

    Relax…dem got it covered…plans pon de table…and …in de works. Relax. Be patient. Just wait a l’il bit longer…you know…time….and twine…

    I had friends all over the Caribbean, and in Canada, today asking me what the hell is happening in my country.

    • Wayne August 9, 2017 at 5:47 pm

      You shoulda tell them ,the same that’s happening in theirs.

  6. Dionne Jackman
    Dionne Jackman August 9, 2017 at 1:01 pm

    Things had to come to this for them to wake up and start looking for a strategy

    • Belfast August 9, 2017 at 10:20 pm

      Yes, our leaders like John the Baptist, have been caught with their pants covering their ankles.
      The AG , as always is just another gunman…….I gun do this, I gun do that!

      • hcalndre August 10, 2017 at 7:24 am

        Belfast; I like that “gun do” phrase you used. All these politicians do is stay in their comfort zone until incidents like what occur at the festival and then start with some stupid solutions. Barbados is so far behind where the justice system is concern that I just can`t get it, something the AG mention about felons associating with other felons and in places where such activities that cause the persons to be in trouble they still frequent, that should be on the books years ago. Sometime time ago parole was brought up. When a person is on parole he/she has to walk a straight line, off the streets by a certain time unless its work related, can`t be seen in those same trouble spots and they must be parole officers to monitor them, could take them in to be tested for alcoholic and drug use but this going to be a long drawn out thing and years from now, it will be only talk. The hospital should had hospital police long time ago.

  7. Milli Watt August 9, 2017 at 1:05 pm

    after 9 years, needless shootings, death, carnage and mayhem this poppet with less than 9 months going come up with this. you mean you goin have all the consultation, drafts, readings, corrections done before you GO next year ssttuuuppppssseeeee. I moving to GUAM

  8. Joy Wharton
    Joy Wharton August 9, 2017 at 1:09 pm

    If these young ppl as it is framed wanted work, they will just be as creative in doing so, as they are in criminal behavior! Don’t make excuses for reckless behavior ! All the jobs in the world won’t change useless mind

    • Patricia Julyon
      Patricia Julyon August 9, 2017 at 2:03 pm

      Dem young fellas got a stinkin mind set dat ent gine change. Pick dem up an drop dem off de en uh de iland. Leh dem fite wha out dey. Den dem wud get sum regard fuh life; duh own, too late.

  9. Rawle Spooner
    Rawle Spooner August 9, 2017 at 1:10 pm

    Sounds all peachy but let’s see if any of it gine come to truition,talk is cheap and election near.

  10. Browneye Queen
    Browneye Queen August 9, 2017 at 1:13 pm

    Stupse that is is so bumb u need to change the punishment n stop sending them to the luxury of Dodds cause them mind set kill d crap n come back out in a few years now repeat n the country n innocent ppl die r get injured what more gun power wanna ain’t ready yet change d stentaces n put them in heavy foot shackle down town n clean some roads and building treat them like slaves not we gotta be fighten as we are the ones doing the crime I really lolly fed up seriously I wonder if wanna got young children tho hmmmmm d time wanna tek raiding blocks n gullies for weed no man ain’t going back pun d streets wid the real fire power no day time so what’s wanna point change d strategies

  11. LaFlame Shakur
    LaFlame Shakur August 9, 2017 at 1:33 pm

    super speed and invulnerability?

  12. Viveean Foster
    Viveean Foster August 9, 2017 at 1:48 pm

    Someone always has to die for these people to start thinking. Heaven help us.

    • Wendy Reece
      Wendy Reece August 9, 2017 at 2:01 pm

      Your words are so true, not just in Barbados, in other countries as well. So sad.

  13. Wendy Reece
    Wendy Reece August 9, 2017 at 1:58 pm

    Hallelujah there is hope for Barbados, bring in the new powers as soon as possible. Thank you Jesus.

    • Patricia Julyon
      Patricia Julyon August 9, 2017 at 2:05 pm

      Yuh live in hope an den die in despair. Who tell u dem for any better solutions?

  14. Michelle Griffith
    Michelle Griffith August 9, 2017 at 1:59 pm

    In order to stop gun violence firstly you have to stop the guns from coming into the country,let the police officers go with the Customs Officers when they are going to check containers,and at all Ports of entry,these people ain’t easy,as long as you grease they hands you can get away with anything,but then again…….hummm
    Guns are not only coming into the island by these drug runners,and gangs and we all know that.

    • Dana Jemmott
      Dana Jemmott August 9, 2017 at 2:29 pm

      Haha michelle Griffith u head good regardless to what happen u think this country will get the top ppl responsible for the guns these little youngsters are only the small fish.. this country isn’t ready to hold the real ppl and handcuff them for there dirty work.

    • Michelle Griffith
      Michelle Griffith August 9, 2017 at 2:56 pm

      Dana my head good enough,because if they want this nonsense to stop they have to start at the top and until that happens we still in deep s**t.

    • Rawle Spooner
      Rawle Spooner August 9, 2017 at 3:23 pm

      Dana Jemmott You are so right on point I have been saying that in post after post.But that’s not going to happen police should check heights and terraces they is lots to be found.

    • Cathy Jessamy-Babb
      Cathy Jessamy-Babb August 9, 2017 at 4:20 pm

      Are you saying the customs managers are doing a poor job because it starts at the port of entry. How come a poor man brings in a little gift for his little children and they can find it and charge him $300 or more dollars, and a container of marijuana and/or guns come in and they cannot find them, they cannot weigh the bags and charge huge customs’ fees. Tell those lies to the birds because I am not buying it.

  15. Pam Fazio
    Pam Fazio August 9, 2017 at 2:08 pm

    What you need to ask how are they affording these guns? Many of the guns are thousands of dollars in the U.S. I realize drug money is some of it but what about the rest? Who is paying these young men? Get the top people not the little guy if you want to stop this.

  16. Bill Taitt
    Bill Taitt August 9, 2017 at 2:37 pm

    All the politicians do is TALK Big. Any decisions taken will take numerous years to be implemented like everything else about here.

  17. Ranesha Clarke
    Ranesha Clarke August 9, 2017 at 2:41 pm

    these youngsters dont want to work. thats why we have to call pepole from diffeent island to do our farming and construction work. we have diffrent places such as polly and skills training for people who are not academically smart but can learn a skill or two but all these youngsters want is fast and easy money

  18. Lennox Phillips
    Lennox Phillips August 9, 2017 at 2:45 pm

    They did great 30 years ago

  19. Alisa Cox-West
    Alisa Cox-West August 9, 2017 at 2:47 pm

    The police aren’t going to risk their lives shooting at men with handguns while the men are spraying back with AKs! Not to mention, who don’t owe, frightened and who ain’t frightened, owe!

    You want people to come forward as witnesses? How? Ain’t a damn thing anonymous in Bim except when it comes to backroom deals and who has the tax return money from the last 3 years. I bet if the government had to bury every person who dies as a result of gun violence you would get your tails in shape and fix things.

    Here are some solutions….
    1. All of you clowns resign so we can put proper problem solvers in place.

    2. Let’s fix the economy so these youngsters have jobs rather than being idle and causing havoc.

    3. Train your damn officers and equip them with the proper arms to confidently combat the bad guys.

  20. Dave Person
    Dave Person August 9, 2017 at 2:49 pm

    Any of you commenting here ever had to get any license or registration for anything small business related from any government agency?

  21. Ralph White
    Ralph White August 9, 2017 at 2:53 pm

    Here we go
    Another promise…

  22. Arte Maria Benn
    Arte Maria Benn August 9, 2017 at 3:01 pm




    Can we stop trying to cure symptoms please?!?

  23. Sue Springer
    Sue Springer August 9, 2017 at 3:09 pm

    Remove the sources for the guns coming into the country to start with ! No guns no shooting

  24. Itz Queen
    Itz Queen August 9, 2017 at 3:16 pm

    It’s no secret what the force can’t do,you have been sitting and pussyfooting for to long you and the judicial system,a matter of fact de whole public service want overhauling every body getting pay for doing nothing

  25. Michael Harris
    Michael Harris August 9, 2017 at 3:22 pm

    I have Dave Person

  26. Steve Jemmott
    Steve Jemmott August 9, 2017 at 3:40 pm

    First thing they need to do is to find out is who’s selling the illegal guns? Where are they coming from? Then deal with the crime- If that’s the case then the maths is direct matrix. (note: there may be a “replacement ” ). If not so, then there’s a new variable : the notion of owning guns is out through the window, the new vogue is “renting and contracting” as a result we’re talking a new permutation. …….the test can now begin, we will need all the numbers.

  27. Suezette Boyce-Griffith
    Suezette Boyce-Griffith August 9, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    we hear a lot of lip service but som of the bigger heads hav a lot to do with it these poor boys on the block cant buy guns so easy some ppl are in this country are the sources please tell me where this 5 1o 15 20 thousands of dollars coming from tell ppl i want to know

  28. Alex Alleyne August 9, 2017 at 4:37 pm

    The AG is lost , he do not understand his role with “job description”.
    Over and over again I call for him and the PM to use CBC tv and address the nation , this was long before thing were this bad. Now that the horse has bolted , here he come like a “Knight in shining armour”. One guy keep calling him “Mr. Clueless”, even went so far as saying he is the worst AG ever in the Caribbean.
    The RBPF is stretch, they all need a pay hike and upgraded firepower.

  29. Deenee Thomas
    Deenee Thomas August 9, 2017 at 5:25 pm

    A devoted, trained gang detail is needed. Undercover police are needed who are able to infiltrate the gangs, keep their mouths shut and do their job. Some youn g people also needed to “Have ears” in the neighborhood. school, parties, just hanging out. Everyone needs to be able to listen, see and not talk about it until it reached the right delegated trusted official/s. They in turn need to do their job not looking for praise, admiration etc. In other words train, shut up. Investigate, have excellent documentation, and move on.

    • hcalndre August 10, 2017 at 11:01 am

      Deenee Thomas; all I`m hearing is the guns are not manufactured in barbados, they are coming in through the ports of entry, that much the police are saying but you never heard of “Sting Operations” where the police go undercover and obtain the guns as they are saying that they are rented and go from there. When persons commit crimes with guns and are guilty, you don`t hear the sentence for the gun, only for the robbery and not the use of the gun in the commission of the crime because they would be looking at least 25 to 35 years for arm robbery and then the wounding.

  30. Wayne August 9, 2017 at 5:54 pm

    That young man died, his family is grieving and not one of you all ,send a condolence to the family, this is the excuse/reason that teens join,form or turn to gangs, they feel like someone loves them,someone cares and that they belong.

    • Hewers of wood August 9, 2017 at 6:53 pm

      Wayne where is your condolence??? In life you can only control your own actions, no one else and you cannot make someone feel something they don’t have. You must have it in you, and it will automatically come out.

  31. Christopher Hill
    Christopher Hill August 9, 2017 at 5:57 pm

    thowing out peoples rights. stop and search, mid night road blocks, lickin in peoples door in the middle of the night, martial law i could just see them now.

  32. fedup August 9, 2017 at 6:18 pm

    Help!!! FBI..RCMP..Scotland Yard..get the guns AND the low lives off the street.

    • hcalndre August 10, 2017 at 11:14 am

      @fedup; you are saying call in these people from outside of barbados, should I call on you to find my married ring that I lost in my home?

  33. Hugh Roberta Ferguson
    Hugh Roberta Ferguson August 9, 2017 at 6:29 pm


  34. Dennis Taitt
    Dennis Taitt August 9, 2017 at 7:17 pm

    Hope this is not a talk show.

  35. Jennifer August 9, 2017 at 7:27 pm

    This is why no one takes you people seriously. You are like that volcano which never erupts. Only rumble for a few days and go back quiet. Same problem a few weeks later, you will rumble again and the cycle goes on. Then you gravitate from one cycle to the next. This government is also caught in the same rumble cycle. This is why they all take the PI$$ with you people.

  36. Joy August 9, 2017 at 7:43 pm

    We need to stop making excuses for young men and women who got free education, free medical attention and free school meals which the law abiding, tax paying citizens paid for! Not even poverty or hunger can justify taking up a gun and firing into a crowd! If the police had fired very few people would make excuses for them even if they were trying to protect innocent people! As a society we need to accept personal responsibility for our choices and our lives! Don’t blame poverty, don’t blame the church, don’t blame the school, don’t blame the police! At the end of the day it’s up to you!

  37. Samud Ali
    Samud Ali August 9, 2017 at 7:54 pm

    Go research why the crime rate in the Netherlands is so low that prisons are going out of business. ..and it has nothing to do with “popping necks” or ‘beating people”

  38. Harri August 9, 2017 at 9:28 pm

    We should go bavk to Sir David Simmonds’ law.

  39. romeo crowell August 9, 2017 at 10:11 pm

    Guns are not here because of the youth, it is the adults.
    These young boys just finish school how can they import guns.
    If the Government is serious about addressing this situation here are some ideas.
    Phase 1
    Two month amnesty for all illegal guns to be turned in.Put it on the radio, tv and print media everyday for two months. Ensure everyone knows
    After that 10yrs for anyone found with an illegal gun and then time for the crime.
    Extend the prison by 100 more rooms
    A lot 200acres of land to for gun criminals to work managed by the Defense Force
    All gun crimes must be tried in three months
    Murder with an illegal gun is 30yrs
    Phase 2
    Develop a legal frame work that would permit wayward youth to be sent to The Barbados Youth Service for a minimum of 1 yr as they work in agriculture,manufacturing, IT and visit a church every week.
    This is our last chance to pull this situation back and it is not hard. If the USA could clean up New York with 7 million people in the late eighties and nighties we can tidy up Barbados a 163 square miles
    This our home.
    Barbados is know Caribbean wide and Internationally for its peaceful and relax life style are w going to sit back and just talk about doing something. So come on ,what are you going to do about it?

  40. Belfast August 9, 2017 at 10:30 pm

    If a container of chicken wings is able to get through the back door of the Bridgetown Port, why not guns?
    Today marks the 46 anniversary of Internment without Trial, during those terrible times of ”The Troubles” in Northern Ireland.
    Perhaps we need to adopt a similar approach to our own home- bred Terror/Criminals.

  41. Loretta Griffith August 9, 2017 at 11:58 pm

    I have said before and will continue to say, this country is replete with hypocrites, fakers and pretenders. Until we get rid of most or all of them, then we will continue to spin top in mud. We must say and do what we mean and not play to the gallery. Too many double standards.
    They are so many allegations out there that would make your head grow especially about some persons who pretend to be upstanding citizens.
    I hope that justice be meted out to these criminals without fear or favour.
    This country need(s) to be taken back like yesterday. Let’s get serious and stop all the long talk.

  42. sylvia bascombe August 10, 2017 at 8:19 am

    the public does have information but barbados small when you call the police station sometimes the police does know the criminal element or they family and will tell them a person from this telephone number call and nth en threats are made or worst so so you still has to be careful because you dont know what will be the end result have seen it played out live

  43. Romeo Crowell August 10, 2017 at 9:11 am

    Call from a pay phone. Do what you have to do. It must stop !!. Don’t wait until it is your mother, sister our you. Barbadians take action !!

  44. Samantha walker August 10, 2017 at 9:41 am

    Well its not rocket science….Anything the people with money want to do, it will be done….Guns in the black community at a time when Bajans are facing more money woes, and look at the results !! Black on Black crime…the system is working perfectly while the Leaders talk, talk and talk and innocent people get caught in the crossfire.

    But the “No smoking Law” was implemented forthwith, you can see where their interests lies, its definitely not in the people. You think Im voting, I done wiv this man-made hypocrital, false, system. As long as you got money “you can do what you want cos blacks have always been poor and some will sell their own mothers, and some mothers need selling…..all traits from slavery including the slowness to act to change situations.

    The system is being maintained by the masses too !!

  45. hcalndre August 10, 2017 at 11:23 am

    @fedup; you are saying call in these people from outside of barbados, should I call on you to find my married ring that I lost in my home?

  46. Tony Waterman August 10, 2017 at 10:39 pm

    @hcalndre!!! Your Misplaced Sarcasm is NOT lost on me, but it tell me that people in Barbados who think like you are the Reason we now have this Problem.
    Barbados is a VERY SMALL and CLOSE Society (Approx 260.000 people Including Illegals/Undocumented) Persons on Including Pelican Island and the Land Reclaimed for the Deep Water harbour 168 Sq.M, and as thr PM Alluded to in one of his Infrequent Speeches practically everyone knows someone, this is the Reason why @Fedup is Calling out for help from someone/Anyone from Outside of Barbados (Help!!! FBI..RCMP..Scotland Yard..get the guns AND the low lives off the street.) These Institutions have no interest in anything/Anyone in Brbados, and the Investigators are NOT ready to put a Blotch on Their careears, the end result then would be that we stand a VERY GOOD Chance of finding out how the Guns and Drugs are getting into Barbados.
    As a matter of Fact, some of this Information had already been given to a FORMER C.O P. but he was Ousted before he could take any action, and after he had informed Barbados that he had received this Information. that Information came from INTERPOL.
    I can’t still yet understand why the fact that there was such information was ever released to the general Public.

    The Investigation that is now surrounding the President of the USA/Russia, is NOT being done by te DOJ,(Dept. of Justice) it is done by a Special Counsel, someone outside og the System, the Investigation into the Metropolitan Police in London, was NOT done by the metropolitan Police it was done by an INDEPENDENT Poli Complaints Commission. but Because of the Size and Closeness of Barbadian Society, outside help is the Only Call that will help solve this issue.
    @Belfast!!! we can’t act like they did in Belfast, because we have signed too may Treaties that we did NOT Read before affixing signatures to, and we are running around “BEGGING” (Edwin Yearwood) too many people to Lend us Money which we can only get id we do what they say. we are still NOT Independent.

  47. Tony Waterman August 10, 2017 at 10:40 pm

    @hcalndre!!!! bet yuh they would find it for yuh.


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