The red carpet was rolled out as the Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF) under the auspices of the Police Welfare Association (PWA) gave recognition to some members of the organisation who achieved excellence during the past year.
The occasion was a gala Awards and Retirement Ceremony last Saturday that was attended by Prime Minister Tillman Thomas who has responsibility for National Security, Commissioner Willan Thompson and other past Commissioners of Police at the Grenada Trade Centre.
Awards were handed out to a number of individuals, police stations, and departments which stood out from among their contemporaries.
The top awards at the Fourth Annual Awards and Retirement Ceremony went to Woman Corporal of Police Dianne Dumont, and Constable Rein Brizan as the Policewoman and Policeman of 2012 respectively.
Corporal 91 Dumont who enlisted in RGPF on November 30, 1992 was referred to as one who demonstrated the ideals and enthusiasm of propelling the force into the Community Policing objectives.
Through her sole initiative and direction, Cpl. Dumont was able to secure corporate support from the business community to sponsor uniforms for the Central Division Police Boys Club, and food hampers for the Richmond Home during the Month of the Elderly, and the Queen Elizabeth Home for Children.
The female Police Officer was also responsible for the formation of the North East Committee to partner with communities.
Constable 398 Brizan who enlisted in the force on April 1, 1996 is currently attached to the Traffic Department.
During the year under review, the Police Officer issued a total of 651 fixed penalty tickets, and executed ten arrests on persons mainly for driving without a drivers’ license.
The 2012 prize of bravery went to Constable 645 Keddy Victor for his resilience, tenacity and commitment to duty.
Constable Victor joined the force on March 8, 2008 and on completion of his initial training was posted at the Carriacou Police Station. He is currently attached to the Grenville Police Station in St. Andrew’s.
The awards ceremony heard that on July 28, Constable Victor was on duty at the Ten to Ten Show at Moonlight City in St. Andrew’s and while there he joined other Police Officers in responding to a report of a gang fight.
He pursued a group of men who were armed with cutlasses and was able to apprehend one of them.
The apprehended man began to fight with Constable Victor, but he was able to subdue him, and took him into custody with the cutlass.
Two other men who were part of the gang fight were also arrested and charges laid on them.
The Drug Squad took away the award for being the most proactive department against fighting crime in the major awards category.
In his address, Police Commissioner Thompson spoke of being satisfied with the level of success the RGPF has had during the year, pointing out that during the year, the force registered an increase in the rate of crimes being solved.
He felt that this was largely due to the marriage between the police force and the general public.
Commissioner Thompson gave a commitment that RGPF would continue to embrace the community through its Community Policing initiative.
He stated that as part of embracing the communities, they have been participating in Church Services, community walkabouts, and construction and refurbishment of houses.
“It is this partnership that has created the atmosphere for you, the public, to support us more,” he said.
“We in the RGPF would like the marriage to continue. We do not want to divorce. In fact, we would want to ensure that the vow that we would have taken remains strong, remains vibrant,” he added.
According to Commissioner Thompson, just as there has been an increase in the number of crimes solved, they want to also see a decline in the number of crimes committed.
The Police Commissioner also commended those who took the initiative to upgrade themselves academically.
He said previously there was no member of the force possessing a degree from a recognised educational institution but the situation has changed.
“Today we have persons within the institution that hold Masters Degree,” he said.
The ceremony was also addressed by Chairman of the Police Welfare Association, Inspector Randy Connaught who disclosed that over the past four years, the association has continued to bring due recognition to outstanding police Officers, while at the same time exalting those who have retired after adding value to the legacy of RGPF.
Insp. Connaught said the ceremony fits into the strategic advancement of the force and the value that is placed on the human element
He stressed that the efforts of the awardees have brought the membership of RGPF closer to realising the fundamentals of the strategic objective of Community Policing.
Head of the Police Prosecution Department, Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Damian Lee said the RGPF can boast and remind itself that Grenada is still one of the safest places on the earth to live.
ASP Lee suggested that this can be attributed to the diligence of the retirees who were honoured at the function.
He said the retirees who included Deputy Commissioner of Police, Raymond Charles have made their contributions to the safety and security of the country.
“Our awardees have performed exceedingly well with the same objectives in mind, that is the safety and security of this beautiful homeland of ours,” he said.