Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) in Charge of Area One, Devon Watkis, is appealing to residents of Mount Salem in St. James to embrace the law enforcement personnel serving the area.
The appeal comes in the wake of a recent newspaper article, which stated that a perception of corruption still hangs over the station, stemming from an incident some three years ago, where a civilian was found to have been impersonating a policeman, carrying out duties at the station for about six months.
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There were also allegations that police personnel were involved in the lottery scam operating out of Montego Bay.
Addressing a Think Tank hosted by the Jamaica Information Service’s (JIS) Montego Bay Regional Office on June 27, ACP Watkis said he is “very astonished “to find out that there were lingering feelings toward the police station."
He said citizens have no need to fear, noting that the police personnel at Mount Salem “are honourable persons, who have a desire to serve and have been serving well."
He noted that coming out of the incident, there was a purging of staff, with new men and women put in place, all of whom have been properly vetted.
“I really want to use the opportunity to assure the residents (of Montego Bay) and the nation that in fact, the police persons there have all been properly vetted and placed there and we have sufficient oversight. We all have to adhere to the ethos of the JCF (Jamaica Constabulary Force), and these persons are called upon to execute them each day,” he stated.
ACP Watkis added that the superintendent now in charge of Mount Salem is always available, and persons can always contact the Area One headquarters if they have any concerns.
“If for any reason there are any individual there that you have sufficient cause to believe is a misfit then we are prepared to review such persons,” he stated.
The ACP described the area being covered by the Mount Salem police as “difficult and challenging” but said the law enforcement personnel stationed there “are up to the challenge”.
He also appealed for residents in the area to keep the peace and to resolve their disputes and conflicts in an amicable way.
By Bryan Miller, JIS Reporter