Police Commissioner defends officers

Commissioner of Police, Tyrone Griffith, has spoken out in defence of police officers not producing files for court cases.

Stating that while there was no excuse for files not being produced, the Commissioner made it clear that there was, however, an explanation.

“If you recognise that our workload is increasing substantially, our demands have been greater, and yet we have significant shortages, then it means the same people are called upon to do the work over and over.

“And so, there will be times when there will be shortcomings by members of the Force by not producing files,” Griffith contended.

He made these statements as he addressed the Annual General Meeting of the Barbados Police Association in the Prince Cave Hall at the District “A” Police Station on Friday.

Griffith said despite the conditions under which lawmen worked and the shortages, he, however, got the impression that there was a movement to make the Royal Barbados Police Force “the scapegoat for the slow operation of the judicial system”.

“There is a lot of blame to be apportioned everywhere. I am sure that there are many very serious matters before the court where there are files many years old that are not being addressed, and yet when there is an assault case that is dismissed that is highlighted.  I think that we need to be fair if we are to address the whole issue of delays in the court system,” the Commissioner maintained.

He added that it appeared as if the Force was often looked upon as the “salvation for everything”, and expected to address the issues facing the country.

But, Griffith stressed, the issues in the country were much bigger than the Royal Barbados Police Force.  “I am sure that we are doing our best, but we need to have other people take responsibility for some of the blame that is there to be apportioned,” he stated.

However, he noted that while the region is plagued with an increase in violent crimes spurred by the drug culture and the illicit firearms trade, Barbados had been able to hold its own and manage its crime well.

“There is no Caribbean country at this particular juncture that has a lower murder rate than Barbados per 100 000… We have had our spikes, but we have been able to manage our murders effectively with the support of the rank and file, and so I would want to give them kudos for the contribution that they have made. I also want to implore you to continue on that path,” Griffith urged.

Crediting the island’s success in the crime fight to the work of police officers, the Commissioner reminded the public that crime is not “a police thing; crime is the business of all Barbadians”.

47 Responses to Police Commissioner defends officers

  1. Alex Alleyne November 26, 2017 at 11:07 am

    If we increase the fines for Guns and drugs along with the confiscation of property plus big bail money in CASH put in bank to get some interest ,then those funds will go toward buying new equipment and bring the RBPF up to date with technology.

  2. Jennifer November 26, 2017 at 11:09 am

    But if I was a criminal I would be glad that my file went missing, and With a good lawyer I gone clear. We need to establish genuine missing or wilful missing too.

    • Bajan Patriot November 26, 2017 at 7:51 pm

      @Jennifer. If a police officers keep locking up the same criminals and the courts keep slapping them on they risk i would lost them files too. Let them linger in prison.

  3. Alex Alleyne November 26, 2017 at 11:11 am


  4. Mark My Word November 26, 2017 at 11:29 am

    We have been able to manage our murders effectively
    Never knew the Police Force Managed Murders.
    So Mr. Commissioner of Police, Tyrone Griffith how many Murders will you manage next year

    • Bajan November 27, 2017 at 1:47 pm

      The COP was addressing an audience of Law Enforcement Officers and they understood he meant ‘Managing the murder investigations’.

      Police are aware that they are only certain categories of crime that any Police Force can effectively prevent by proactive policing methods. Murder is not in any of those groups. If a person intends to murder another they will do so by all means at the convenient opportunity.

      Every single murder has a root cause. Every murderer was raised in a home, with a family, situated in a village or community. That’s where they are socialized, that’s where certain behaviours, good or destructive, are festered and take root.

      Police are not responsible for the high crime rate or for not coming up with strategies to prevent every crime. Let us reflect and accept that the problem began in our homes, in our villages and schools. Let us, the parents, siblings, family, neighbours, and friends take responsibility for finding answers and sustainable solutions to these crime-related behaviours being exhibited by people that we know.

  5. Jennifer November 26, 2017 at 11:46 am

    I would think he is talking about managing murder files (rank and file)>>>>>> but why would he not secure this area????? This people need tech to store their files. Then use mini hand held devices to take to court. In the UK I worked with a hawk eye system which was updated regularly of course. Its aim was to weed out poor performance, monitor non or low-productivity, ensure accountability etc. Once you enter info you cannot change it either. That would be good in this place. Just remove the medical bits and install the policing bits. They would like that.

  6. milli watt November 26, 2017 at 11:55 am

    implement a document management system with an officer or 2 trained in library science and research………..understand commish but you got to make sure you put the resources behind the officers to become better trained in other fields that are necessary in the execution of the work of the force. when you put your hand on me I can’t plea ignorance therefore I find you guilty of the charge and commit you to improve the situation ASAP

  7. bk November 26, 2017 at 12:16 pm

    the RBPF is grossly understaffed, it seems unable to attract young persons to join the ranks, as it once did. Maybe its a pay issue, or maybe its something much deeper.

  8. Michael Turton
    Michael Turton November 26, 2017 at 1:15 pm

    This is the problem with everything in Barbados excuses and justification for failures. And this is no idle comment for I have been a victim of this lack of paper work for 3 years. Some years ago I was the victim of a burglary; the perpetrator was quickly apprehend with some of my items still in his possession. I appeared to Magistrate court for 3 years, adjournment after adjournment due to lack of paperwork and police appearance. Finally the Magistrate after reviewing the history of the adjournments got angry, apologized to me and the other victims and issued a bench warrant for the officers and documents at the next hearing. Nothing happened at the next hearing for on that same morning was the burial of an officer. I was advised to drop my portion of the case against the accused since it was likely that the sentences would run concurrently. The Magistrate accepted my withdrawal and that ended my ordeal. When that guy was finally sentenced he did about 2 months because of time spent on remand. The police do an excellent job on apprehending suspects but there must be follow through or the accused end up on remand for long periods, then end up on bail, thereafter some lawyer argues on their behalf for miscarriage of justice ; we the victims get nothing.

    • Francis Blackman-StJohn
      Francis Blackman-StJohn November 26, 2017 at 2:19 pm

      Kind of runs like most other Govt departments if you ask me….if the big head is bad how can you expect the body to be good??

    • Ena Odderson
      Ena Odderson November 26, 2017 at 5:30 pm

      After going to court many times up to now I don’t know the outcome of my case. You get rob them rob by the system.

  9. jrsmith November 26, 2017 at 2:03 pm

    This seems to be something known by the criminals in Barbados , thats why most of them seems to be smiling every time they are arrested ……………………………………

  10. Leroy November 26, 2017 at 3:09 pm

    1. STOP making excuses and speak to the percentage of cases where files are missing and the reasons and methods to stop this behaviour.

    2. Please as top cop, you should know the difference between murder rate and conviction rate and the different relatio ships.

    3. Please tell me who is looking to blame the force for slow or no justice in many cases, if the force after 5 years cannot produce a file there are very serious queations need to be asked, was it incomoetance or was it done willfully and how about bribes and corruption?

    Instead of paiting a picture as the victim, take stock and speak with Att Gen, Finanve minister and Fruendel and see where you can improve, the last intl assessment and numerous complaints is a good place to start.

  11. Joan Crawford
    Joan Crawford November 26, 2017 at 4:04 pm

    Do you defend them when they do need nonsense and do you defend the inspectors who take 2 and 3 years for them to work on simple complaints that can be mostly solved in weeks for example the bajan guy who was in the international media about the bajan police who went and search his house and did not have
    a search warrant and then you give a stupid excuse saying they have one but you can’t find it

  12. Tony Webster November 26, 2017 at 5:21 pm

    @Jennifer: many thanks for pointing in the direction(s ) mentioned. Whire a changeover from paper to digital needs expert planning and execution, there is no avoiding the imperatives. You are also right in highlighting those digital police/justice sytems that have made the switch, and are now enjoying the gains in peformance.
    The U.K. and similar countries now using digital evidence gathering etc, would gladly help out. Maybe, there are other reasons for our sloth?

  13. Al Clarke November 26, 2017 at 5:39 pm

    I wholly agree with Michael Turton’s comments. Whilst the force is having more cases to deal with, and having to re-prioritise that should not be an excuse for files going missing. Losing documents is a sign of inefficiency, carelessness, or corrupt behaviour.
    When an elderly man is badly beaten up by a family and after numerous adjournments the police say they can’t locate the files you have to wonder whether they are corrupt or just don’t care.

  14. Keith November 26, 2017 at 6:21 pm

    They in Barbados !et all them Jamaicans and trini in so what you expect they lucky it ain’t worst .Get a rough no nonsense commissioner of police .

  15. Bajan Patriot November 26, 2017 at 7:47 pm

    Running a police department in 2017 using 19th centre method will create lost files sir. Police still hand write everything on papers. Its well know that no government want you all to modernised. l know p.o that uses there own computers and printers at home to type up evidence and case report’s. Shameful to think that a P.M can import a $770.000 car and police officer cant even get a lap top computer or printer to do his or her job properly. Barbados priority are twisted.

    • Jennifer November 26, 2017 at 8:57 pm

      Ok. And to think of all the wastage of funds in this place. Them police probably like these mishaps too.

  16. Nicholas Mackie
    Nicholas Mackie November 26, 2017 at 8:02 pm

    Police had lap top computers in police cars 10 years ago ….where are they now ? Are they still using them ?

    • Adrian Allison
      Adrian Allison November 26, 2017 at 8:39 pm

      Laptops ten years ago are absolutely no use if they weren’t replaced.
      Ask the present AG about the resources that are put at the disposal of officers the replacements of tool etc.
      Unless the police are given the correct and up to date resources then they are only as good as their last investigation.
      Most importantly the AG needs to be ask why the police have to endure working under the conditions that they do, with most of the barracks only fit for animals.
      Along with the above the question it must be asked whether the present AG think that it is wise to make police officers whose work bring them in contact with the criminal element and their ill gotten gains on a daily basis not to garauntee a proper salary to officers to avoid the temptation of corruption.
      Frankly, law enforcement is more important than the politicians that we currently have yet these politicians have given themselves healthy raises throughout their two terms in office yet police officers who put their very lives on the line are left to be begging for a livable salary.
      That just doesn’t ring right with us the public nor the police.

    • Nicholas Mackie
      Nicholas Mackie November 26, 2017 at 8:51 pm

      If the country cannot afford to buy a new laptop or tablet. For 75 police cars then i think we should throw in the towel … call our old colonial masters and tell them we give up because we have failed to manage a police force all for the want of laptop computer!!

      • Jennifer November 26, 2017 at 8:58 pm

        lol – and that is not even a joke.

    • Michael Maskell
      Michael Maskell November 26, 2017 at 10:43 pm

      Nicholas Mackie south coast need fixing first

    • Nicholas Mackie
      Nicholas Mackie November 26, 2017 at 10:46 pm

      A laptop is US$500 – sewage pumps alittle more

    • Michael Maskell
      Michael Maskell November 26, 2017 at 10:47 pm

      Nicholas Mackie lol really? I had no idea

    • Nicholas Mackie
      Nicholas Mackie November 26, 2017 at 10:48 pm

      There are different in size too

    • Michael Maskell
      Michael Maskell November 26, 2017 at 11:07 pm

      That’s what she said!!

  17. luther thorne November 26, 2017 at 8:06 pm

    Barbados making bare in truth.
    Ah wonder what would Barbados be like lif White people were in the Civil Service

  18. Eutavine Weeks
    Eutavine Weeks November 26, 2017 at 9:34 pm

    Very good Mr commissioner your men and women deserve the best so be there for them

  19. Tony Waterman November 26, 2017 at 10:16 pm

    @Najan Patriot!!!! It dosen’t work that way, The Constitution of Barbados Provides for a Trial in a Reasonable time, and Lawyers like Andrew Pilgrim are NOT doing to sit around and let their Clients languish in Prison, because of the Incompetence of the Prosecutors Office. and against the Promise of that Supreme Document.There is a Bajan Police Constable here in Ottawa, Mr. Colbert Murrell he works for the “Ontario Provincial Police” and he is an Old Combermerian, Providing Court Briefs for the Court Prosecutors is what he has been doing for Years now, perhaps if we could get him Seconded to the DPP in Barbados for a Two year Period, he would be able to set up a system for us that will solve our Lost File quandry. (Just a suggestion)

    @Alex Alleyne!!!! Perhaps he should have said “Contain” but why JUmp on him, The Police :CANNOT” Prevent any one person from Murdering another, they only come in after the Fact, i believe he was referring to bring their Murder Investigations to a Conclusion with arrests. Hence (Management)

    @bk!!!! They might be understaffed when it pertains to Police Officers, but we could do a much better job of supporting the DPP, by hiring and training Civilian Support Staff, at a much better Cost effective level.

    @Michael Turton, That is why i suggested above, that there should be Civilian Employees hired to fill the Gap between the Police Investigators and the DPP, because when an Officer has a large Caseload this is when the Delays occour.

    @Joan Crawford!!!! That has to do with having a “BAD” Lawyer, the Officer in charge of the Search MUST have the Warrant with him and Show/Give it to the OWNER of the Premises, if that did NOT occour, then your Lawyer should be Back before the Judge to have anything Taken as evidence ruled out.

    @Tony Webster!!! Yes there is a reason for oure Sloth, we think that we know everything, and we have this MYTH about us about “Punching above our weight” and we don’t want to ask anyone Outside of Barbados for HELP.

    @luther thorne!!!! maybe Much Better ?????

  20. Leroy November 26, 2017 at 10:58 pm

    Griffith said despite the conditions under which lawmen worked and the shortages, he, however, got the impression that there was a movement to make the Royal Barbados Police Force “the scapegoat for the slow operation of the judicial system”.

    “There is a lot of blame to be apportioned everywhere. I am sure that there are many very serious matters before the court where there are files many years old that are not being addressed, and yet when there is an assault case that is dismissed that is highlighted.  I think that we need to be fair if we are to address the whole issue of delays in the court system,” the Commissioner maintained.

    Who is trying to give impression about police?
    And do you suggest these files are lost at thr office of dpp or court house?

    My previous comment was suspended for highlighting the truth

  21. Gloria Barrow
    Gloria Barrow November 27, 2017 at 4:39 am

    Police men work very hard ,and don’t care what they do bajan never satisfied,stand up for the workers under your care ,Mr commissioner ,you cannot please bajans

  22. Rawle Spooner
    Rawle Spooner November 27, 2017 at 6:04 am

    Ok gine agree with him on a partial basis because justice system slow snail pace speed is a government problem and it has been this way for many moons but folks just start taking notice.RBPF is understaff because of a couple of issues firstly the pay is garbage and secondly promotions seems to be too damm political so officers go elsewhere in the islands where pay is way better.

  23. harry turnover November 27, 2017 at 6:54 am

    Mr.Commissioner , that IS THEIR JOB..you are making excuses for your workers not doing their JOB
    Air Traffic Controllers for example have more Aircraft to deal with but they don’t forget Aircraft in the sky or on the ground,Nurses have more patients to deal with and Teachers have the MOST problems of all.
    The POLICE FORCE had a REGRADING sometime ago and the rest of the Civil Service HAD NONE and if one was to look at the Civil List one would see that one or 2 posts in the Air Traffic Control Department HAS BEEN DOWNGRADED within the recent past

  24. Greengiant November 27, 2017 at 7:49 am

    @Jennifer: I too worked in the UK for several years, police corruption, and racial corruption is alive and kicking there. They have all the technology, they have all the training and newly improved methods. Young high school drop outs of all races and ethnic backgrounds are terrorising the country with stabbings, shootings, and moped robberies Women get raped, sexually assaulted in public parks, in tube stations and in a few instances on the very tubes daily. These things hasn’t made the systems there any better than our own.

    Even the roads there are bad, Just this year the government in England rolled out a substantial road works program to repair pot holes. The latest lingering instability process of brexit is another racially divisive issue.

    So please, stop the nonsense of criticising everything that happens here. Why do some of you who like me have returned here to live, have to try to make others feel that this is a little island from hell, when you all ran back to shelter here from the shocking changes in the developed world? I can go on forever, but I won’t.

    Come on woman, be real for once, and to thine own self be true.

  25. Alex Alleyne November 27, 2017 at 8:32 am

    has any political leader said that they will give the RBPF a pay hike if they form the next Government ?. I notice they all saying a lot of things too good to be true.
    The RBPF need a pay hike ASAP.

    • Big Man November 27, 2017 at 9:48 am

      Alex a pay hike means more taxes are you willing to pay more taxes
      Wunna think BLP got a money tree up Roebuck St.
      TAXES is what pays the bills
      More expenditure MORE TAXES

      The RBPF need a pay hike ASAP then Alex you need to start paying more TAXES ASAP

      • Leroy November 27, 2017 at 10:25 am

        Take the $ from contracts for Maloney and give people a raise.

  26. Kearn Williams
    Kearn Williams November 27, 2017 at 9:14 am

    I like he yuh know. I think he is a decent guy. But he needs to attend some sort of public speaking course. He is d CoP not just a cop

  27. Ossie Moore November 27, 2017 at 10:53 am

    Commissioner Tyrone Griffith says :
    ” There is no Caribbean country at this particular juncture that has a lower murder rate than Barbados per 100 000…”

    Ossie Moore : That’s a damn lie , you are lying Comissioner ” ( and the “no backbone ” bajan media , the weakest media in the world ) let you get away with lying.

    . . . . and you Co missioner is just another average bajan who likes to slip into denial very quickly along with using the comparison factor very quickly also as an easy way out of intricate situations.

  28. Ossie Moore November 27, 2017 at 11:03 am

    Commissioner Tyrone Griffith says :

    ” but we have been able to manage our murders effectively with the support of the rank and file ”

    Ossie Moore : Please tell me that I am wrong and that this is not the same Commissioner who a couple of years ago make a similar asinine statement by saying that :

    ” crime is up but murders are down “

  29. jrsmith November 27, 2017 at 12:37 pm

    Law enforcement is way down the government things to do list , which in 2 terms they haven’t ticked one box , there is so much to do ……… Crime in Barbados seems so easy to commit , because the criminal see there is the chance most people get of from being prosecuted…..

    • Jennifer November 27, 2017 at 3:50 pm

      “jRSmith – So what really at the top of the TO DO list????? cause nothing ain’t getting do.

  30. jrsmith November 27, 2017 at 3:57 pm

    @,Jennifer , hail, hail your (3:50) nah, nah , they are looking after themselves and keeping the routes clear for the 1% ers…………

  31. realbajan November 27, 2017 at 7:43 pm

    If the civil servants would do they job that they are paid for the police would have more time to do theirs more effectively police have to be teachers doctors firemen social workers you name it they do it. People have a fire and first person they call is the police. People be real


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