Categorized | Local, News

Paul Morris calls for ‘radical’ difference in policing on Montserrat

Morris denounces his four-year service
by B. Roach

Deputy Commissioner of Police Paul Morris

The Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCoP) Paul Morris sat with the Commissioner Steve Foster on Wednesday night in dialogue with the public as they sought to react to Governor Davis’ “determination to change the police force so that the community has some confidence.”

Morris who tendered his resignation after three months a few weeks ago, was appointed DCoP in 2008, and was given the responsibility during his tenure for the overall administration of the RMPS to include training, development and budget, after having previously served a four-year stint as Superintendent of Police from 2000-2004, was expressing failure of his own service.

“…we’re fogging the issue slightly by not doing that analysis and not thinking what is different now, how can we do things differently, and there is no doubt in my mind that we as a police service have to do things radically different than we’ve always done…” the Deputy said, adding, “we have got to change our ways and we’ve got to change it as of yesterday…”

The Governor’s call for the change came after the police themselves put out claims of an escalation in criminal activities in the island. The Governor called for Overseas Territories assistance in carrying out what seemed to have been part of a full scale investigation into the activities and conduct of the police. While reiterating his disappointment in people who are not prepared to give information, he said the police do need to treat information from the public confidentially and with respect, “otherwise it’s all self-defeating.”

On that matter Morris who gave no reasons with his resignation, is suggesting that the police may even resort to paying for information. “We have to look at using informants in a structured manner and if need be pay people for information.” Paul Morris on police attitudes and restructure

Commissioner of Police Steve Foster

Morris’ reaction at the forum was in part as follows: “If we continue to think that everything is absolutely fine then we’re fogging the issue slightly by not doing that analysis and not thinking what is different now, how can we do things differently. And there is no doubt in my mind that we as a police service have to do things radically different than we’ve always done…The principles will be the same but we have got to change our ways and we’ve got to change it as of yesterday because otherwise we will not be fit to meet the challenges that’s coming ahead of us we’ve got to look into surveillance, we’ve got to look at using informants in a structured manner and if need be pay people to tell us information.”

Meanwhile former Chief Minister P Austin Bramble speaking at the forum says that a lot more will have to be done beyond the rhetoric of the police to stem the situation as described regarding crime on the island, calling for a thorough examination of where we were and where we are now…

Within the last six (6) weeks reports have circulated of alleged sexual assaults, robberies and attempted robberies and recently suspicious deaths, and from the end of last year even alleged assaults by police and others. Both the DCoP and more recently the CoP have been making statements on radio calling on the public to assist with information on the various crimes.

There are questions about the claims of escalation in crime. There was a spate of burglaries in the earlier part of last year. It is believed by some observers that in the absence of statistics, they question if there is really an escalation, the promotion of which may be unduly damaging the islands reputation.

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A Moment with the Registrar of Lands

Morris denounces his four-year service
by B. Roach

Deputy Commissioner of Police Paul Morris

The Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCoP) Paul Morris sat with the Commissioner Steve Foster on Wednesday night in dialogue with the public as they sought to react to Governor Davis’ “determination to change the police force so that the community has some confidence.”

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Morris who tendered his resignation after three months a few weeks ago, was appointed DCoP in 2008, and was given the responsibility during his tenure for the overall administration of the RMPS to include training, development and budget, after having previously served a four-year stint as Superintendent of Police from 2000-2004, was expressing failure of his own service.

“…we’re fogging the issue slightly by not doing that analysis and not thinking what is different now, how can we do things differently, and there is no doubt in my mind that we as a police service have to do things radically different than we’ve always done…” the Deputy said, adding, “we have got to change our ways and we’ve got to change it as of yesterday…”

The Governor’s call for the change came after the police themselves put out claims of an escalation in criminal activities in the island. The Governor called for Overseas Territories assistance in carrying out what seemed to have been part of a full scale investigation into the activities and conduct of the police. While reiterating his disappointment in people who are not prepared to give information, he said the police do need to treat information from the public confidentially and with respect, “otherwise it’s all self-defeating.”

On that matter Morris who gave no reasons with his resignation, is suggesting that the police may even resort to paying for information. “We have to look at using informants in a structured manner and if need be pay people for information.” Paul Morris on police attitudes and restructure

Commissioner of Police Steve Foster

Morris’ reaction at the forum was in part as follows: “If we continue to think that everything is absolutely fine then we’re fogging the issue slightly by not doing that analysis and not thinking what is different now, how can we do things differently. And there is no doubt in my mind that we as a police service have to do things radically different than we’ve always done…The principles will be the same but we have got to change our ways and we’ve got to change it as of yesterday because otherwise we will not be fit to meet the challenges that’s coming ahead of us we’ve got to look into surveillance, we’ve got to look at using informants in a structured manner and if need be pay people to tell us information.”

Meanwhile former Chief Minister P Austin Bramble speaking at the forum says that a lot more will have to be done beyond the rhetoric of the police to stem the situation as described regarding crime on the island, calling for a thorough examination of where we were and where we are now…

Within the last six (6) weeks reports have circulated of alleged sexual assaults, robberies and attempted robberies and recently suspicious deaths, and from the end of last year even alleged assaults by police and others. Both the DCoP and more recently the CoP have been making statements on radio calling on the public to assist with information on the various crimes.

There are questions about the claims of escalation in crime. There was a spate of burglaries in the earlier part of last year. It is believed by some observers that in the absence of statistics, they question if there is really an escalation, the promotion of which may be unduly damaging the islands reputation.