WORKERS at the Duncan Street Police Post in Port of Spain are claiming police brutality and harassment after one of their colleagues was allegedly beaten by police officers on Thursday night.
According to Kendall Wint, he was approached by officers of Besson Street Police Station around 9 p.m. The officers, he claimed, slapped him and placed him in a police vehicle and took him to John John, Laventille.
At Laventille, Wint, a 40-year-old labourer and watchman, said a man approached him armed with a firearm and told the officers to “leave him here”. The officers, he said, did not, the police claiming they were seen taking him away.
One of Wint’s co-workers, Oba Waldron, said he was threatened by an officer to come off a scaffolding or be shot down.
Waldron said he is a hard-working man, showing off his blistered palms, and asked why the officers were advantaging “poor, hard-working people”.
Waldron swore on the life of his only child that he was not lying and that the officers told the workers they are working for gangsters and they must be carrying illegal firearms “at this hour” to protect themselves.
Another witness to the alleged assault was 46-year-old Shawn Nichols, who painted a vivid picture.
Nichols said he and Wint were standing close to each other when the officers arrived.
One officer, identified only as “Fingers”, went directly to Wint and as his brothers-in-arms stood by, asked if Wint was the one who was boasting that he had sexually satisfied Fingers’s wife.
Before he could answer, Nichols said Wint was slapped about the face and taken away.
He was allegedly choked and thrown into a police vehicle, one of two that came to the site.
The vehicles bore number plates PCX 1062 and PCX 1063, the men said.
Kenneth “Spanish” Rodriguez, the contractor who has been labelled by those in authority as a gangster, told the media he and his workmen are not frightened by the abuse of their powers by the police. He added if that is what the police wanted to do, then so be it, but he was not going to be stopped.
In response, Inspector Sahadeo Singh, of Besson Street Police Station, said yesterday he was not aware of the incident and urged the men to make a report.
Last week, Housing Minister Dr Roodal Moonilal toured the building at Duncan Street and promised the police and army post would be completed in two weeks.
The apartment building was once home to 16-year-old Nyam Antoine, who was dragged from his home on August 14 and shot 15 times.