There are new questions hanging over the story reported by a 23-year-old man who claimed that he was sodomized with a police baton while in custody at the Timehri Police station.
Doctors and Officials of the Georgetown Hospital on Friday said that the young man at the centre of a police baton rape case never complained to doctors about ever being sexually assaulted when admitted there in December. When doctors heard of his complaints in the media about the sex assault, physical examinations were done but there were no injuries found that were consistent with a violent sexual assault.
However, the Doctors stated that there is the possibility that the wounds could have healed within weeks before he was seen by the hospital’s medical team, but they reitterated that he never complained of any sexual assault at any time.
Director of Medical Services at the Georgetown Hospital Dr. Sheik Amir told a media conference at the hospital on Friday morning that the prisoner Colwyn Harding was first taken to the Georgetown Hospital by prison authorities on 13th December, 2013 and was diagnosed with a hernia. He was referred to the surgery clinic.
The prisoner returned to the hospital on December 17, complaining of severe pains with “an increased swelling to the area and vomiting”, Dr Amir said.
After examination, Harding was taken for an emergency surgery for a strangulated inguinal scrotal hernia. He was taken for an additional surgery because of complications.
The doctors said they are unaware whether the condition the man was suffering come could have come from a sexual assault. However, they noted that it was possible that it could have been caused by any pressure being applied to the abdominal wall.
The Guyana Police Force has launched a full investigation into the complaint by the prisoner that he was sexually assaulted in November while in police custody at Timehri. The Police Force never learnt of his complaint until December when his mother contacted the Police Commissioner.
The Police Commissioner said as part of the investigation, the Office of Professional Responsibility intends to visit the Magistrates Court where the prisoner was taken on a larceny charge just after being arrested. He was remanded to prison. Senior Police Officers have said based on the man’s own timeline, he would have had to make his court appearance after the alleged assault. There was no complaint to the Magistrate during that court appearance about any assault.