Senior cops call on JCF to do more for retirees
MANDEVILLE, Manchester — Three senior officers in the Jamaica Constabulary Forces’ (JCF) Area Three division are calling for greater recognition of police retirees, even as they credit some of their successes to old policing techniques.
Head of the police Area Three, which comprises Clarendon, Manchester, and St Elizabeth, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Glenford Miller and two of his commanders — Acting Superintendent Carlos Russell in charge of Clarendon and acting Superintendent Coleridge Minto in charge of St Elizabeth – say the intelligence gathered by retirees has resulted in the recent arrests of wanted men.
“The knowledge that you see in this room is a whole lot. I can tell you that up to today I am still calling on retirees to give me advice. I don’t know it all. I depend on persons like you and others who have actually been through it to continue to guide you. I always call for support,” Miller told his audience at a retirement function in Mandeville on Friday.
“When the prisoners escaped in St Elizabeth, it was a retiree that let me know that there was an operations order. And that was how I could touch base with Mr Minto and they dug up the archive. The operation [back then] was successful, because they got who they wanted. All now we don’t get [recapture that] man, but we got several others, it was because of the advice that we got,” Miller explained.
His reference was to the eight inmates who escaped during a jailbreak on June 19 at the Black River Police Station lock-up in St Elizabeth.
Minto, who assumed duties as the commander for St Elizabeth following the jailbreak, lauded retirees for continuously assisting the JCF.
“Some of the successes that I am reaping in St Elizabeth came as a result of the expertise of many persons who have retired from the JCF. Perhaps the most significant assignment that I have had in over 20 years of service is my assignment in the parish of St Elizabeth, and I rely heavily, not only on my peers and those that are serving, but I call on so many who have retired, who have way more experience and knowledge than I have,” he said.
Minto said the police have so far accounted for four of the eight escapees.
On November 18, Dean Simpson, one of the escapees, was killed in a confrontation with the Manchester police near a nightclub in Downs, close to the border with St Elizabeth.
In recent months two other escapees have been recaptured. They are Richard Brown and Kenneth Stewart. Another escapee, Alrick Hutchinson, was found dead in September.
Those remaining at large are 31-year-old Oral Cole, from Comfort Hall, Manchester; 34-year-old Anward Hinds from Maroon Town and 25-year-old Jevaughn Simms from Copperwood, both in St James; and Demar Williams from Gravel Heights, Spanish Town, St Catherine.
“The operation that we did a few years ago, when we captured one of the escapees who was at the time wanted — Anward Hinds, otherwise called “Kirkie” — and there was this massive operation, we took that document with our ACP and we reviewed, and we got some guidance from those who are retired. It is as a result of the advice, help, and expertise of some of our retirees why we have been able to recover or capture four,” Minto said.
Hinds was charged with the murders of four farmers who were brutally killed in Claremont, St Elizabeth, in May 2015. At that time police said he was believed to be the leader of a gang, which was a remnant of the infamous Stone Crusher gang. In July 2015 he was apprehended in Hatfield, Manchester, hiding in a house ceiling.
“There are still four outstanding. We are cleaning up the parish of St Elizabeth,” Minto stressed.
His superior, Miller, echoed similar sentiments in lauding retirees.
“We depend on you, don’t leave us alone after you would have stored up all that knowledge. When you have all that knowledge and you end up not passing it on. Knowledge gained and not shared, it is useless,” Miller said.
He said the honouring of retirees is paramount and should be continuous.
“This is something that we need to do on a regular basis…We need to have more of these get-togethers, it is important. Let’s use today to mark a better partnership between us,” he said.
Russell called on the high command to lead in recognising retirees.
“It is very good when you can get our retirees together like this to meet and greet, have fun, and share ideas, share some policing techniques. Sometimes as we move along in years and we think of new technology, but sometimes the old policing tactics that we used back in the days are good,” he said.
“…When we have persons retire in the JCF, I believe that we need to do more for the retirees, because what happens when persons retire, you see some persons work until their last day and they just move on into their new life and there is nothing that is done for them. Unless the commanding officer or the division puts together some activity to show appreciation, nothing is done. I believe that something needs to be done from the high command level to recognise our retirees, so at least maybe once or twice per year we have a big function where persons who are going on retirement are honoured and are presented with something that they can remember their journey in this noble organisation.
“I hope that the high command will look at this and put something in place to recognise our hard-working men and women of the Jamaica Constabulary Force,” added Russell.