Criminal and Internal Investigations Launched
The Belize Police Department has also launched an investigation to determine whether the officers will be facing internal charges for violating the department’s governing policies. The infractions include breaches of four distinct police policies: the body camera policy, the use of force policy, the human rights policy, and the pursuit policy. ASP Alejandro Hernandez, a member of the department’s Development and Compliance Unit, briefed the media this evening but was unable to divulge all the findings.
ASP Alejandro Hernandez, Development and Compliance Unit: “Our officers based on information received they acted upon but there were factors to consider. For example the time of the day , the condition of the road, specifically to save lives was there population density out on the road that night ? Based on the information received and shots fired and officers returning fire they had to consider if they continued a pursuit or leave it at that but after communicating with the station commander that night who was going to view these factors and decide that we continue with this pursuit or not because if they had prior knowledge that these persons where they can be found then the pursuit could have stopped. The pursuit policy also states that if you’re in pursuit of someone fleeing you should not fire warning shots. As up to the extent I can go. However I won’t be divulging more information because since this investigation is not mature yet so I will hold back on that. When it comes to the human rights policy as you all know the department is here for us to save life and property. So our investigation has shown a lot of breaches but I will refrain from discussing with you all on just information that Mr.Jones and we have set aside. We have a body cam that when there’s an incident the body cams must be on at all times but if it’s a sensitive like “sexual nature” then the body cams are to stay off but since this incident happened those body cams should have been on at all times.”