San Pedro Special Constables Graduate
On Monday the Commissioner of Police attempted to mollify anti-crime
sentiment on San Pedro by dispatching 16 special constables to the
island and opening a training course for them. After one week of
training the San Pedro Sun's Ron Sniffin caught up with the new
officers as they graduated today.
Ron Sniffin Reporting, [for The San Pedro Sun]
After a week of training and the official swearing in, sixteen San
Pedro men are now officially Special Constables, prepared to assist
the San Pedro Police to fight crime.
Supt. Noel Leal, Belize Police Department
"It is the result of the action plan of the Commissioner of Police for
the Police Department (BPD) in harnessing the support from the
community through auxiliary groups and volunteers. In this case there
are sixteen Special Constables who have graduated today and who have
been sworn in as Special Constables for San Pedro. The BPD's action
plan harnesses support from the community, and as I said from
volunteers, but it is because as I said we realize we cannot do the
job alone so we need the help from these people and from the
"What exactly will the Special Constables do?
Supt. Noel Leal,
"They will be acting in support of the San Pedro police officers. They
will be working with them, they will be enforcing the laws, they will
have certain powers of arrest, but its mostly to support the San
Pedro police detachment. It is like putting sixteen new police
officers to the San Pedro detachment in an effort to help us fight
and reduce crime in the area."
Sergeants Lanza and Choco spent the week providing the cadets the
training and are optimistic these new officers will help curtail
crime on the island.
Sgt. Marcelo Choco,
"This training is basically to equip members of the community who took
up the initiative to become a Special Constable to help in the fight
against crime in collaboration with the San Pedro police detachment.
What we did for the past four days is to equip them with the basic
knowledge that a law enforcement officer needs to be on the street,
to lawfully effect an arrest, and eventually take the matter to
Most of the Special Constables have day jobs. However they have made
the commitment to make San Pedro safe again.
Thomas Requena, Special Constable
"I've been living out here for the past six years and I am a boat
captain and my main interest is that I am in the tourism business and
whatever crimes happen on this island, everyone gets affected by it,
especially us as tour guides."
Evan Vernon, Special Constable
"I believe you have to contribute to the development of a society, if
not you are just going to be on the sidelines and we need people that
want to be involved."
So with the assistance of the Special Constables in San Pedro,
hopefully they will be able to get a grip on the crime situation.
From San Pedro for the San Pedro Sun and Channel 7 News, I am Ron
The Special Constables will take their order from a new officer
commanding on the island, Inspector Joaquin Sabal. Sabal was deployed
because the Commissioner said his predecessor showed ineffective