JIS News

The police are on the frontline in the fight against crime and the fear of crime as the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF), continues to work with citizens in responding to the needs of individuals and communities.
Using the latest technology, personnel are also trained to manage information and intelligence, in order to secure successful court prosecutions.
Hence, the work of an officer is both challenging and diverse, as the JCF continues to face many challenges on a daily basis over the years. The duties of the police have been extended, in keeping with local, regional, and global security demands, forcing personnel not only to train harder, but also to use limited resources to tackle new problems.
In addition to this, there remains a school of thought that there are corrupt elements within the Force. But many loyal officers have continued to discount this opinion through their sound ethical service to the Force, and the people it has been mandated to protect and serve.
Detective Inspector Edgar Brown, is one such individual, who has shown that Jamaicans can still have hope and faith in the work of the police.
Recently he was given an Integrity Award by the Inspectors Branch Board, for turning over approximately $45 million after a high speed car chase in St. Ann in June of this year.
This was no ordinary act as a citizen, but he tells JIS News, that it was never a difficult decision but a challenge.
“It was never a difficult decision, it was more of a challenge. The fact of the matter is that the basic principles that were taught to me by my parents helped me to do this; it was the right thing to do. If I had to do this over again, I would, because I was never ever tempted to do things that are wrong,” the Detective Inspector says while adding that, “I have never had the passion or desire to achieve what is not mine. I enjoy the comfort of working hard and achieving the little bit and utilising it to please my lifestyle.”
It was in the first week of June when Inspector Brown was on his way home from work with a family member, and suspected a car driving in an erratic manner along the St. Ann main road. He immediately communicated this to control.
According to the Detective Inspector, he followed the car on a dangerous but worthwhile high speed chase to Steer Town where the vehicle crashed. He said immediately he called for back up and a wrecker, which appeared shortly afterwards.
He further states that instantaneously a massive crowd came on the scene and persons were seen removing contents from the vehicle which later turned out to be millions of dollars, and it was at this time he had to use diplomacy to get the cash back from the onlookers.
“The car crashed at a wash stand so in split seconds persons were on the scene. Immediately I saw a man taking two bags out of the car and hurrying to another car that was parked in close proximity. I had to quickly take these away from him, on opening the bag I realized that it was full of cash, so I knew now that I had to guard the car until back up arrived. Persons, in the meantime, had taken out some of the money left in the vehicle, and I had to use my initiative to get the money back,” he explains.
Simultaneously, he informed the crowd of the need to preserve the scene as persons were killed in the crash. He told them that it was a matter for police investigation and of the likely consequences to them, in terms of charges, if they continued to compromise the scene.
“The persons complied because they knew me, but gradually the crowd began to get thicker and thicker. When the money was checked and the necessary investigations carried out, it was said to have been $50 million but we only recovered $45 million,” he says.
To many Jamaicans this display by the Detective Inspector showed elements of egocentricity, because of the economic woes that people face on a daily basis. But when asked by JIS News, how he felt about his actions, he said it was a risky road, but one he would journey again.
“It was really a risky thing, but I would do it again tomorrow. I am proud of myself because I am in support of principles and values. If we can get our young people to just be honest, honesty is important. Things like these we need to instil in our people and if we do, we would be saying a lot and this would make a big difference,” he reasons.
He further encourages Jamaicans to do the same if they find themselves in such a situation.
“I am urging Jamaicans, even my colleagues, to do what is right, even if you never had the training when you were growing up. And the right thing to do is to do what I did; there is no excuse to do otherwise,” he points out.
Detective Inspector Brown who has been a member of the JCF for 32 years was also the 2000-2001 Lasco Top Cop of the year, and he continues to carry out extraordinary service, by doing just what the JCF’s motto states: ‘To Serve, Protect and Reassure.’
“At a pretty young age, I was a big fan of Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys mystery stories. Also I remember a bank robbery in Discovery Bay, St. Ann which led to a chase through Brown’s Town, Alexandria and into Linstead, (St. Catherine) this was fascinating. I have always had the mind for investigation, so it was never difficult when I was 18 to decide that a police officer is what I wanted to become. Even when I was at school, the very lady who lectured never took much out of her to convince me that this job would be the ideal one,” Detective Brown explains, of his decision to join the JCF.
A Christian by faith, he adds that asking for God’s guidance every day is one major factor, which helps him to clear his hurdles daily.
“The challenges are ever present at work; you have to be on the alert for any eventuality. For instance, the day that I found the money, I had just completed 14 hours, I went home picked up my daughter and was taking her to school when the car caught my attention. The modus operandi was cause for concern, so I am saying that any given day, you face things. Before the start of your duties, ask the Lord to guide you and help you to resolve issues,” he advises.
In the meantime the Detective Inspector says that an important change he would like to see is for the Force to become more people oriented.
Explaining, he says, “The JCF did a research recently and they came up with 124 recommendations, and I embrace all of them. I would, however, love to see the Force being more people oriented. People should have a say in the policing of their communities and getting better equipment. These all lead to the morale of the Force. I believe they (the JCF) are on the right track and I am looking towards a reformed police force.”
The JCF is now undergoing restructuring and has started with the refurbishing of police stations across the island, in order to create a harmonious working environment for its personnel.