Among the persons being targeted, declared Selvin Haye, deputy commissioner in charge of crime, are the financiers behind the illegal importation and distribution of firearms, as well as those involved in drug trafficking.
“We will be building more and better enterprise cases to tackle this type of crime and criminality. We will be using specialized teams now armed with better investigative skills and analytical capabilities to track these criminals,” Haye said.
Well, I guess we have gotten over the charade that ZOSO was going to be a significant driver of crime in a southerly direction.
We are now onto the next smoke screen.
Inherent in those comments coming from the police high command is a confession that there have been zero emphasis to link those shipping the weapons and ammunition from overseas to the contrabands they ship.
The police high command has been complicit in simply basking in the glory of an occasional find here and there and taking the credit for the work the cops on the streets do.
That has been the modus operandi of the bloated top heavy bureaucracy that is known as the police high command.
A command structure which has never done much in the way of garnering real command and is anything but structured.
So now they admit that despite the crime wave over the last several decades, hell, since I left the force after my brief stint in 91 that the department wasn’t doing what they ought to have been doing even now?
The Deputy Commissioner’s statement was a real expose’ into what is really happening or more like, what is not happening in the force that is contributing to the wave of homicides and other serious crimes sweeping the country.
Though it is 2017 the force seems to be more focused on recording reports onto computers (moving away from those God-awful big old books ) than solving serious crimes.
I was never one who had much confidence in the ability of the police high command to get anything done or to sustain a good thing established by the rank and file. As such I never gave any credence to the grand pronouncements which come out of that body. Neither do I bother paying attention to those who are convinced that there is new innovation happening in the force which will amount to anything positive today.
In his first reporting to the Parliament having been mandated by law after the launch of the first Zone of special operations in Mount Salem St James prime Minister Andrew Holness told the nation quote:
The justification for the ZOSO designation was based on the relevant legal criteria, intelligence, as well as strategic and operational considerations of the joint command of the security forces. He said that, following 32 special operations conducted by the joint force in the first 10 days, five illegal firearms were recovered, two wanted men were taken into custody and a number of “lead sheets” used in lotto scamming activities recovered. “The next 10 days will see the continuation of internal security operations to rid the zone of illegal weapons, ammunition, and contraband,” the prime minister told the House.
The leader of the Opposition Peter Phillips countered that despite the operation haul of “five guns and two arrests in 10 days”, 54 murders have occurred at the same time across the island. He insisted that since the declaration of the ZOSO, the daily national rate has increased. “That is to say that we had been going nationally at about 4.2 murders per day…and in the period since the zone, the national average has been about 5.5 murders per day.”
I never thought that there would be a crime initiative that would have any measurable effect on crime in the present environment that exists in the country today.
There has to be a seismic attitudinal shift in the way people see crime affecting their lives and what they are willing to do to change that paradigm.
Jamaica has never been a place which was supportive of crime initiatives, it has always been highly opinionated without the facts as well.
Those characteristics are a perfect storm which causes the Island of 2.8 million people to be one of the highest producers of crime on the planet.
One of the principles I applied as an officer was to allow suspects to talk, they will tell you pretty much what you need to know. Today as a person who operates in the business space I still listen intently to all who I do business with-with a view to determining their authenticity.
The statements of the police high command have been extremely revealing.
Which brings me to my final point.
The police high command is even more stupid than I previously thought they were.
If the Police high command really intended to finally get up off their tired decrepit behinds and do something about tracing the caches of weapons pouring into the Island why would they announce it?
One of the things those concerned about crime harp on is political interference in law enforcement.
Politicians are culpable as it relates to the crime wave sweeping the country but as it relates to the police announcing its intentions to criminals politicians bear zero responsibility.
That collusion or utter stupidity is the police’s and theirs alone.
No one stands in the way of the police if they chose to go after principals in the weapons trade, not even the politicians.
If the police are interested in busting the people at the top who are importing guns and ammunition into the country the police can do it.
Announcing that they intend to go after principals now when it should have been doing that as a matter, of course, tells a skeptic like me that they are not going after the big fish they are simply telling them to be more discreet.
I have always supported the police but I can in no way turn a blind eye to blatant incompetence at the bare minimum and gross complicity at worse on the part of the police.
Trust me it is not as hard as the police tell you it is to track down and bring these criminals to justice.
If the police really wanted to bring these principal offenders to justice they would seek the warrants they need and go about their investigations without making announcements.
After all the politicians are some of the worst criminals, why would the police tell them what they intend to do?
That ladies and gentleman is the reason I decided to walk away from this department as soon as the opportunity presented itself.