Two officers accused of police brutality in San Pedro to be Criminally Charged Print E-mail

A video of San Pedro police officers brutalizing a civilian has been widely circulated on social media and what was odd was that the two officers, PCs Tyrell Rowley and Samir Medina, would not face any criminal charges. According to Chester Williams, recently promoted Commissioner of Police, this was the case because the victim, Jamir Leal, and his family had refused to cooperate with the Professional Standards Branch and did not want to bring charges against the officers. Well, the change of events have taken a complete 180- degree turn as both officers will now see criminal charges being brought against them.

The incident occurred on New Year night when Jamir Leal and his brothers were at Playa Bar and Grill in San Pedro. For some reason of the other, Leal assaulted his ex-girlfriend, who was also there at the time and from there, all hell broke loose. Leal’s brother, as well as other persons at the establishment, attempted to subdue him and when their actions proved futile, police officers were called to mediate. PCs Rowley and Medina used blunt force on Leal, causing him to apparently, from video evidence, lose consciousness and continued to beat him where he lay defenseless on the ground.

As previously stated, Leal was not especially enthused to cooperate with the PSB but according to COMPOL Williams, Leal’s mother has cooperated and traveled to Belmopan. “And with that they were more than willing to cooperate. They have all given their detailed statements to the police and now I am pleased to say we have sufficient evidence now and we now have the two complainants and we will now be proceeding criminally against the two mentioned police officers.”

The charges to be brought against the officers are expected to be wounding and harm and according to the COMPOL, the law provides that the COMPOL can dismiss an officer should they be convicted of a criminal offense. “The nature of the conduct they are being charged with internally that is an act to the prejudice of good order and discipline. It is an egregious breach of discipline. If convicted in the tribunal, that too can warrant a dismissal, it is very serious charges internally.”

Jamir Leal, who spoke to the media on Tuesday January 8, said that he was unwilling to proceed with charges against the two officers. His meeting with Commissioner Williams, he says, has given him assurance that he would not face any retaliatory action by the police officers as a result of his complaint. He said that he has confidence in the Police Department that he will not be abused as was his initial fear why he did not give a report.