Minister of Human Development comments on Kareem Martinez judgement
The tragic death of 14-year-old Laddie Gillett has brought the relationship between law enforcement and children into the spotlight. As a matter of fact, this week, alone, we have seen a police officer and a special constable sentenced to prison for taking advantage of minors. In the case where Kareem Martinez was convicted for the killing of Gillett, the presiding Justice noted that the Belize Police Department violated the United Nations Convention on the Rights of a Child, when Gillett was stopped on the night he was killed. According to Minister of Human Development, Dolores Balderamos Garcia, the case has brought into perspective the need for better policing when it comes to minors.
Dolores Balderamos Garcia, Minister of Human Development, Families and Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs: “We continue to work with the police on the rights of children and children should never be treated in the same way as adults so by all means spirit well I think you’ve almost answered your own question by saying that it is necessary for us to give that special attention to minors. You cannot treat minors in the same way as adults. On the sentence of the police that carried out that very unfortunate and heinous manslaughter well the judge taking into account every single thing came down on the side of being stiff and I think as a country we have to absolutely respect that. “