Street Fighter leaks his version of things…

coat of arms of Trinidad and Tobago.

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These two reports were in todays Trinidad Express newspaper.

Please feel free to comment, I know that you should never believe everything you read in the press but this is impressive isn’t it? All those figures and clear up rates…

Pity the Police are still working to solve over 400 murders with 26 staff while SAUTT boast their cars, investigators etc…

HAND HITF OVER TO THE POLICE and let them get the mentors, help and assistance this country needs. then and ONLY then will you start seeing impressive clear up rates. Why would 55 people be brought in to help a country but then both have their hands tied in what they can help with and also set them up in completely the wrong place. Oh it’s because the police are corrupt is it? really? all of them? I don’t think so… and I bet some SAUTT officers are not as clean as they say they are, especially the ones accepting holidays and taking other incentives.

The only way Trinidad & Tobago will ever achieve the reduction in crime everyone says they want is if a joined up proactive approach is made. JOINED UP means just that…

They could also then help with the transformation the Police Service will undergo in March (from March).

Task Force boasts of reducing homicides

THE Homicide Investigations Task Force (HITF) of the Special Anti-Crime Unit of Trinidad and Tobago (SAUTT) has boasted that its intervention in probing gang-related homicides has contributed to a significant reduction in homicides between November 2008 and September 2010.

The unit has also stated it has been instrumental in achieving a noteworthy increase in the detection rate compared to that of its counterparts at the Homicide Bureau of Investigations (HBI) of the Police Service.

In a document the unit provided to Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar and her Cabinet last July, which was obtained by the Sunday Express, it was reported that, in 2009, months after the unit was formed, after SAUTT was mandated by the then People’s National Movement (PNM) government to probe all gang-related homicides, it recorded a 40.85 per cent detection rate.

In 2008, 70 per cent of the homicides committed throughout the country were classified as gang-related by the Homicide Bureau of Investigations (HBI). For the same period, the HITF said, the detection rate was 17.6 per cent with a record high of 547 murders.

During 2009, after the HITF assumed primacy for 71 investigations classified as gang-related, 29 homicides and two related attempted killings were detected, which resulted in 41 suspects being arrested and charged.

The HITF added, “The team (HITF) achieved a homicide detection rate of 40.85 per cent. … The annual homicide figure reduced to 507 (the first year a reduction has ever been achieved. … The detection rate for gang-related homicides (investigated by the HBI) prior to inception of the HITF was less than eight per cent.

“However, all police districts experienced increases except those considered gang areas—being Western, North-Eastern, and Port of Spain, where significant reductions occurred during the second half of the year as the effect of the HITF gang-targeting strategy started to take effect.”

In November 2008, SAUTT formed the HITF to investigate gang-related homicides. The Patrick Manning-led Cabinet had given approval for SAUTT to recruit 16 United Kingdom officers specialised in homicide investigations.

The unit said it was seeking ministerial approval to give it the authority to also probe gang-motivated killings since, “The definition of a gang-related homicide is far too restrictive and is completely dependent on the TTPS maintaining a current, fully inclusive gang database, which experience has shown that they (TTPS) have not done. This will allow the HITF greater latitude in terms of investigating the wider impact of gang homicide in Trinidad with the ability to react to current trends, analysis of hot spots and circumstances of killings.”

Between 2006 and 2008, before the HITF was formed, the unit said, SAUTT’s staff assisted in more than 200 murder scenes, “and achieved a 60 per cent success rate at identification of offenders when SAUTT had total control of crime scenes”.

Though the HITF operates with a shift of close to 26 officers, it leaves the HBI at a clear disadvantage since some shifts at the HBI’s four regions, on any given day, have two investigators who sometimes have to tackle three and four killings during their tour of duty.

The HITF also has at its disposal a fleet of vehicles and other resources, including modern technology as well as accommodation, which is envied by the HBI.

One senior HBI officer called for the merger of the units, under the control of the senior superintendent at the HBI, where the units work as a team to effectively and efficiently probe and solve homicides.

The HITF was last year given the green light to continue probing gang-related homicides by the Steering Committee, led by deputy Commissioner of Police Stephen Williams, who was appointed by Prime Minister Persad- Bissessar and her Cabinet to come up with a report and recommendations on ways to downsize the unit.

Last month, Williams submitted his report to National Security Minister Brigadier John Sandy, which was expected to be discussed by Cabinet.

Original Article [Trinidad Express]


Better Police Service by March

Ewatski: Major transformation coming

FROM AS early as March of this year, a major transformation initiative is expected to take hold of the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) geared at restoring public confidence and taking policing into the 21st century.

The pilot project, which would be initiated within the Western Division out of the West End Model Police Station in Diego Martin, will focus on a different model in which police officers will deliver their policing services to the public.

Police uniforms are also expected to be changed to suit modern-day policing. This according to Deputy Commissioner in charge of the Operations Branch of the service, Jack Ewatski.

Ewatski, during a recent interview with the Sunday Express, outlined a very exciting initiative which he described as the first step of the transformation of the TTPS, that would take it to the next level.

He said:

“We are moving towards a very contemporary modern, service-delivery model that would have some key elements which would basically focus on our ability to respond to calls for service, whether they are crimes, offences, or any other types of occurrences for which people call the police for assistance. The other aspect of that is our ability to have a patrol in a very meaningful, directed way.

“This new model will have our police officers out in the community in patrol vehicles or on foot or any other means of transportation that’s most appropriate. … We will then be able to dispatch our officers and have them respond in a very timely manner. …

“It will also allow our officers when they are not responding to calls for service to be in the community patrolling and that will certainly increase our level of visibility and it would give people a better sense of safety and security when they do see police officers patrolling. It would give police officers the ability, not only to detect crime that may be occurring, solve crime, but to deter crime through their presence.”

A few weeks ago, National Security Minister Brigadier John Sandy, while speaking with officers of the Western Division during his “Meet the Troops” initiative, urged officers to take full advantage of the significant changes within the service expected to start within the Western Division.

“Your full support would be required to ensure that this remains a successful initiative as we seek to transform the Police Service into the 21st century policing,” Sandy told officers.

When asked what would make this new initiative in patrolling different from the current system, Ewatski said the model would be looking at a more focused approach based on intelligence and the use of the systems already in place to be able to identify the areas where police need to have a greater presence to deal with crime issues.

Ewatski, a former chief of police in Winnipeg, Canada, pointed out that other major components of the new TTPS initiative are to effectively use the technological resources the service has at its disposal, which have been underutilised for far too long.

He said, “The whole trouble is we have not used it to its capacity. We are not anywhere near using the capacity of the technology we have in place. Some of the systems and processes that we have in place in the Police Service are causing us not to be as effective as possible. We need to use more technology; much more than we have been using.

“We need to continue to train and develop our officers and really get into the 21st century when it comes to policing and that could only increase our effectiveness, increase our ability when it comes to serving the citizens of Trinidad and Tobago much more than having them feel very comfortable with us and much more having a handle on the safety issues in the country,” Ewatski said.

He added that the new model initiative also means each policing division would be sectored into different patrol zones which would include vehicular, foot and other means of patrols deemed appropriate for areas they intend to target and deemed as hot spots.

“Once we do the workload analysis, we’d be able to look at the human resource that we need, not only to do the patrols and to respond, but to have criminal investigators, crime-scene investigators, traffic officers and other resources such as the Task Force to deal with high-priority situations.”

He said to ensure the new initiative remains a success a considerable amount of training would be required for officers to assist them in maintaining and developing their skills and competencies so they could deliver the highest level of effective policing.

Also on the cards for the “New TTPS” initiative would be the rebranding of the service, the reduction in working hours for police officers and the adjustments to police uniforms, Ewatski said.

One of the main aspects of the initiative, he said, would be how their resources, particularly human resources, would be deployed. There would be moves to steer away from the traditional deployment measures of having police officers work long shifts.

“We are moving to what we call a compressed work-week system where our officers will be working shorter lengths of time, fewer shifts whether it be a ten-hour or 12-hour shift for a period of four or five days and then having four or five days off to give them a better work-life balance too. It will still allow us to deploy the appropriate resources and to also have the additional resources and individuals who are on their days-off to be brought in if they are needed for exercises or unique circumstances,” Ewatski said.

He said, “We are also looking at making changes in the officer’s uniforms and the equipment they have, to give them a greater sense of pride in the TTPS and to show the public there is a change and to ensure the officers are comfortable with a modern contemporary look. … There is a change happening within the TTPS and a change for the better and sometimes making some cosmetic changes would go a long way in improving the image of the service.

“I am very concerned with the low-level of public confidence that the citizens have of the TTPS and we, the leaders of the organisation, need to ensure that we are increasing that level of confidence that the public has in us and I know we need to work hard on increasing that before the public could feel comfortable in dealing with us in a meaningful way and providing us with the required information to help solve crimes and to help us do our jobs more efficiently,” he said.

Questioned on the cost to undertake such an initiative, Ewatski said money would be pumped into the project but noted that the service already possessed the major resources and it was simply a matter of pooling those resources together to achieve the transformation.

“This is more a change of the mindset, a change of the philosophy on how we’re going to deliver this policing service and we have identified what is required in terms of our physical resources to make this work.

“We want to be seen as a more competent, a more committed and caring Police Service,” Ewatski added.

He said the new initiative is being given the highest priority by Commissioner of Police Dwayne Gibbs and is being fully supported by Sandy and his staff at the National Security Ministry.

Original Article [Trinidad Express]

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