As pressure continues to mount on the Guyana Police Force to file charges against the police officer or officers involved in the gruesome beating and sexual assault of a 23 year old man while in custody, the Home Affairs Ministry is calling for a speedy conclusion of the investigation into the matter.
In a statement issued hours after the Police Force indicated that a policeman was under close arrest in the case, the Ministry of Home Affairs stated that the case “has raised once again public interest as regards treatment of prisoners by Junior Police Ranks who allegedly flaunt the Force’s Standing Orders, thus bringing the Guyana Police Force into disrepute”.
The Ministry said it strongly condemns any such breaches by any member of the Guyana Police Force adding that “such breaches fly in the face of the efforts at Police Reform and makes a mockery of the hard work by the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Strategic Management Department of the Guyana Police Force to successfully implement a strategic plan aimed at modernizing and reforming the Guyana Police Force.”
According to the Ministry, it expects that condign action will be taken by the Commissioner of Police against the Rank(s) found culpable after a speedy, full and proper investigation is conducted into the allegation and legal advice sought from the Chambers of the Director of Public Prosecutions.
The 23 year old young man Colwyn Harding, who was arrested by the Police in his home during a raid, said he was badly beaten then sodomised with a condom covered police baton at the Timehri Police Station.
The incident left the young man bleeding with injuries to his anus and intestines. He said he was badly beaten and held down during the sexual assault. He remains hospitalised with serious internal injuries as a result of the sexual assault.
In its own statement, the Guyana Police Force indicated that the Police Commissioner first became aware of the incident back in December when he received a text message from a relative of the young man. More than three weeks later, the Police Force claims that an investigation is still underway.
The Police statement also added that “unbecoming behaviour by members of the Force will not be tolerated and condign action will be taken against any rank found culpable of such action.”