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Refurbishing of holding cells at the Queen Street Police Station almost complete

In late January, pictures of the unsanitary conditions of the holding cells at the Queen Street police station flooded social media. They were taken by Corporal Darrel Usher who was detained along with his brother and kept in the cell for some forty hours on accusations of assault. But somehow he kept his cellular phone with him and took images of the ghastly conditions of the holding cells and published them on Facebook. The conditions prompted a reaction from the Human Rights Commission of Belize and eventually, Commissioner of Police Chester Williams announced that these would be refurbished. Today, the Commissioner says that work is soon to be completed.

Commissioner of Police Chester Williams: “I am a man of action and when I say I am going to do something I do it. The cell block renovation is well underway. It should be finished in the next week or week and a half and whenever it is done I am inviting a representative from each media house to spend a night in the cell block and you must tell me the next day morning if it suitable for the criminals to be in. 

On another issue, the Commissioner was asked for an update into the incident involving an inspector of Police and a police constable. That is surrounding an incident where Police constable Marco Hynes accuses an inspector of assaulting him. That matter, the commissioner said is being addressed, adding that the complainant does not wish to pursue court action. But when asked why he, the Commissioner is not pushing the investigation further as he has done on other matters where complainants refuse to pursue court action, the Commissioner had this response.

Commissioner of Police Chester Williams:Don’t confuse oranges and apples. The manner in San Pedro was Police against civilian. The matter with Mr. Usher was Police against civilian. The matter with the Constable Mr. Vasquez spoke about and the officer is Police against Police. It is apple and oranges so let us not confuse the two of them. When it comes to officers who commits any misconduct against a member of the public we will go hard at them. When it comes to internal issues and if we can resolve it in house internally then we can do that. We are one organization.”

Updates were provided today during a police event in Belize City.