Acting Police Commissioner, Milton Desir, has told the Times that officers of the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) are not afraid to use deadly force in dealing with violent crime.
Desir was responding to assertions that police officers, in the wake of the damning IMPACS report on extrajudicial killings by members of the RSLPF, may be hesitant about taking on criminals in the event that a situation may develop where the lawmen use lethal force.
“We are not afraid to battle the criminals,” the Acting Police Commissioner declared.
He observed that there are use of force guidelines in place that officers will follow and depending on the situation, the law enforcers can resort to lethal force.
“For example, if someone has a firearm and is about to commit an offence with a firearm deadly force may be used,” Desir explained.
He told the Times all that is required in instances where lethal force is used is for the officer to justify his actions.
“We are not afraid to use deadly force once we are acting in accordance with the law,” Desir said.
His comments came against the backdrop of a recent spate of gun violence in Marchand.
The Acting Police Chief said the recent shootings are under investigation.
He disclosed that as the investigations continue, the police have been carrying out snap traffic checks.
Desir also said that because of events in certain areas, the police will be directing resources to specific places.
He urged members of the public to cooperate with law enforcement officers especially by providing information about persons who are known to be involved in the violent incidents.
“If the information is given to the police we will be acting upon it,” Desir told the Times.