The Guyana Police Force has confirmed that a police sergeant and lance corporal have been transferred out of the traffic department with immediate effect for an unauthorised escort of three heavily tinted Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs’) outfitted with flashing blue and red light and also bearing sirens, which belongs to a city businessman.
BIG Smith Crime Watch received the confirmation from Traffic Chief Linden Isale this evening. The traffic officer confirmed that the two policemen at the time of conducting the escort were stationed at the Traffic Headquarters Eve Leary.
“I questioned these men and these men admitted to me that they performed the escort and that they did not receive any instructions or permission form anyone in the force to do that escort” Isale stated in a telephone interview with BIG Smith Crime Watch.
Asked about the names of the ranks, the Traffic Chief was not prepared to divulge that information to use. However we were able to confirm that the two ranks who performed the escorts, were Sergeant Roland Payne and Lance Corporal Jamal George.
Following the initial report on this matter by BIG Smith Crime Watch, Commissioner of Police Leslie James said that he was going to launch an immediate investigation into the matter.
We were told that after the two ranks were identified and they confirmed performing the escort, they were taken over to the Criminal Investigation Department for Question before being transferred to the Tactical Service Unit even as the probe continued.
This evening, persons close to the investigations revealed that based on the arrangements, the two policemen escorted the businessman’s three vehicles to Parika and they were expected to perform the ‘unauthorised service’ again when the businessman was ready to return to the city.
One senior police source related that from the information being received, the escort of the very businessman without sanction from the force is not the first and that this has been happening for some time now. Reference was also made about a recent escort which the said businessman’s vehicles were escorted from the racing track at Timehri a few weeks ago following the conclusion of a race meet.
This morning the convoy which included a police car to the front and another to the rear of the three black SUVs’ were seen driving at an exceedingly fast rate along the West Demerara with flashing lights and sirens forcing a number of motorists to take evasive measures.
Outside of this unsanctioned escort, police drivers who are otherwise referred to as ‘force driver’ are cautioned that when using sirens, considerations must be given to other road users and the ability of those persons to effectively manoeuvre their vehicles in a safe manner to make way for siren bearing vehicles while at the same time avoiding collision or injury to other commuters.
What however obtains across the country, is that vehicles with sirens blaring are usually forcing their way through busy highways and rural streets at fast rates, when it is generally accepted that sirens are merely to provide clearance and free flow of those vehicles using them.
This dangerous practice referenced above is frequently evident along the East Coast Demerara Railway Embankment by police motorcycles and pickups head from Georgetown to the Lusignan Prisons to escort who are to appear in court for the day.