by Linda Straker
- PM disturbed by sexually-related matters involving members of police force
- Senior officer on leave pending outcome of sexual misconduct allegation
Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell is concerned about the growing number of cases involving sexually-related offences against minors and is most disturbed about those matters when it involves persons who are members of the Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF).
“I have a problem with people who will interfere with vulnerable people and people under age. The laws are strictly against this in a general sense. To me one has to have a weakness of the mind and a problem up here (points to his head) to do some of the things I see happening,” Dr Mitchell commented on the statement from the Community Relations Department (CRD) of the police force that a senior officer was recently sent on leave pending the outcome of a sexual misconduct allegation.
A few months ago, a senior male officer was charged for sexual misconduct involving an adult female. That matter is presently before the court.
“I cannot tell people how to behave in their social life, that is for them and their God but certainly I believe we all have a responsibility to protect our children and those around us, and no one should be able to force themselves on anyone, so I have a problem with rape in any form. Whether it’s a big person or a little one, I have a problem with people using their positions to impose themselves and their will on someone unwillingly,” he said.
Confirming that he has had conversations with persons closest to him about indulging themselves in activities that are prohibited, he told the media during the weekly post-cabinet briefing on Wednesday, “I always caution the men in my cabinet and my team that they have a responsibility to protect the children of the country. We are elected as representatives to protect them not to use them, and I take that very seriously. I am no pastor, I am not a perfect person, but I certainly have some fundamental rules that I stick with and believe in.”
Without referring to any specific project, Dr Mitchell who is also the Minister for National Security said, “I support very strongly any initiatives to deal with those problems that will reduce it and to cut it off completely. Unfortunately, we do have some problems that we have to continue to confront.”
Recently the police force launched a special victims unit whose main task is to focus on matters pertaining to domestic violence and sexually related crimes.