Police To Investigate Alleged Sexual Assaults

November 28, 2013

glenn brangman[Updated with BAD + Police + Regiment response]

Governor George Fergusson said that he doesn’t think a “formal, broader inquiry” would be useful, but has asked the Commissioner of Police to “nominate a single point of contact for the receipt of confidential complaints” with a view to undertaking a future investigation into Glenn Brangman, who recently had his conviction for sexual assault upheld.

61-year-old Glenn Brangman [pictured] — a former Manager of the Bermuda Housing Corporation [BHC] and an ex-Major of the Bermuda Regiment — was jailed after being convicted of multiple counts of sexually molesting a male teenager while employed at BHC.

Subsequent allegations have arisen that Brangman may have had more victims that the one he was convicted for, and Larry Marshall Sr of the group Bermudians Against The Draft, wrote to Attorney General Mark Pettingill to request a Royal Commission.

Mr Marshall suggested that a request be made to the Governor that a Royal Commission be set up to investigate whether “there has been sexual assault in the Bermuda Regiment and whether sexual assault was covered up by officers in the Regiment.”

The Governor said, “Following last week’s confirmation by the Court of Appeal of the conviction for serious sexual offences of Glenn Brangman and the subsequent media reports of a series of allegations relating to his previous period of employment in the Bermuda Regiment up to 2002, I have considered possible further steps.

“I have now asked the Commissioner of Police to nominate a single point of contact for the receipt of confidential complaints with a view to undertaking a future investigation.

“I am aware that thorough investigations have been done in the past by the Regiment authorities. I am also, however, aware of the great difficulties, psychological and social, which victims of such crimes may face in bringing their allegations to the attention of the authorities.

“The Commissioner will therefore shortly announce ways to make it easier for those who may have been victims or who have information regarding such crimes to come forward. These will provide for confidentiality and professional support.

Calls have been made for a formal, broader inquiry to be set up. I don’t believe that this would be useful at this stage.

“We are dealing with allegations of serious crimes and it is right that they should be investigated with a view to possible prosecution, if the evidence is there. A public enquiry would not provide an appropriate a path to prosecution and could delay or cut across a criminal investigation,” concluded the Governor.

Update 5.49pm: In response, Larry Marshall Sr said he is “most encouraged by the action taken by the Governor in asking the Commissioner of Police to appoint a single point to deal with sexual misconduct complaints from soldiers who have served in the Regiment.

Mr Marshall continued, “It is therefore incumbent for the alleged victims to come forward as it appears that great lengths will be taken to ensure their past trauma will be taken into consideration. As a consequence the process should be facilitated in a most sensitive way.

“Having read the statement issued by the Governor it suggests that this is a first step in a process. He has indicated that a formal, broader inquiry would not be useful at this stage as it might hinder prosecution.

“With that I fully agree. However, a distinction must be made between two separate allegations. The first is the allegation that sexual abuse took place.”

Mr Marshall said the second allegation is the possibility that sexual abuse may have been covered up. Calling it the “more sinister allegation,” he said the victims would not necessarily have the “pertinent information to bring the perpetrators to justice. ”

“That is where a board of inquiry, with it’s tremendous investigatory power, will be most effective,” continued Mr Marshall.

“I am hopeful that will be the next step following this initial step and it should in no way be contingent on what information is received by the alleged victims themselves.”

Update 6.31pm: A police spokesperson said, “The Commissioner of Police has consulted with His Excellency the Governor regarding recent public speculation about past sexual assaults that may have taken place within the ranks of the Bermuda Regiment.

“The Commissioner has agreed that for a variety of reasons, potential victims might have decided not to assist with previous investigations but might be willing to come forward now.

“Accordingly, he has appointed Detective Inspector (DI) Mark Clarke to investigate any criminal complaints that might arise.

“DI Clarke is an experienced specialist investigator in charge of the BPS Vulnerable Persons Unit. Any victim can be assured that they will be treated with dignity and that their investigation will be conducted in strict confidence.

“DI Clarke can be contacted at (441) 247-1086 or mclarke@bps.bm.”

Update 7.39pm: Bermuda Regiment Commanding Officer Lt/Col Foster-Brown said, “HE the Governor discussed his intentions with me yesterday and I agreed that in the wake of the recent conviction of Mr Brangman and the subsequent detailed allegations of historic serious misconduct in the media that there was a legitimate concern that Brangman may also have abused his position of trust while in the Regiment prior to 2002.

“The Regiment works hard to provide a safe working environment and the welfare of our soldiers is of paramount concern – any abuse of this, even though over a decade ago, is thus a particularly heinous crime if proven and I urge anyone with evidence of such criminal activity to report it to the appropriate authorities in order to allow justice to prevail.”

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Comments (22)

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  1. Boremeless says:

    Governor is feeling the pressure. I wonder how one branch of government can investigate another?

  2. Terry says:

    The Governor has spoken.
    He is aware of the avenues that can be taken.
    I am sure he has consulted with the Attorney General and the DPP.
    These cases are usually investigated via complaints to the police.

    It, the process will be handled well from investigative purpose to see if a prima face case warrants such.

    Good call by the Governor as the tools are already there and no need for a Royal Commission.

    • Don’t be such a hypocrite and end with peace when you have no desire for justice or show any empathy for the alleged victims. Why are you so bothered by a Royal Commission? I’ll answer for you. Fear!

      • Bermy says:

        Not fear at all. This issue doesn’t need a royal commission it just needs a proper local investigation. This is not 1975 when people where scared to talk out against the law of the land. This is 2013 and people are talking.to be fair I think the regiment did a lot of good for a lot of young Bermudian males, I have seen it with my own eyes and have done my 3 years and 2 months but there have been way to many allegations and stories not to investigate this. Do I think the regiment should be ended, NO. Do I think forced conscription should be ended YES! Do I think the regiment(basically a boys club) finally needs to be investigated and held accountable YES!

  3. Nuffin but da Truth says:

    The Regiment will simply close ranks and not help any investigations as they closed ranks in the past.

    • The Regiment will not be able to close ranks as they are being investigated as opposed to conducting the investigation themselves. A totally different ball game and their worse nightmare. Some will not sleep well tonight at all.

  4. Vote for Me says:

    Am I missing something? The RG has reportedly spoken to numerous alleged victims. How come the Police or another authority does not have access to teh information? I think the allegations go beyond any individual, it looks like a systemic problem at the Regiment. If the RG story today is true that Maj. Brangman was forced to retire based on the allegations, how can it follow that there was insufficinet evidence for the Regiment to make substantive recommendations on the systemic allegations about the Regiment.

    Can it really be true that successive COs were not aware during their tenure!!!

    It seems as though a confidential investigation is warranted, possble outside of the police since speaking to the police sometimes causes other unexpected reluctance.

  5. GOD1ST says:

    Well done Govenor George Fergusson!!!!

  6. GOD1ST says:

    Thank you Mr. Marshall!!!!

  7. sage says:

    Time will tell.

  8. Truth is killin' me... says:

    Some people will be twitchin’ tonight!

  9. Proud Bermudian says:

    Finally Mr. Marshall’s voice is being heard who wants to send their son to a place where they can allegedly be sexually abused for YEARS and it allegedly gets covered up. I am sure that Brangman was not the only superior officer preying on these Young men!! This whole situation is shameful! People such as this ruin an organizations with their deviant behavior.

  10. bornb says:

    Mercy… sounds like it’s been a lot of nonsense going on at that Regiment!!

  11. Photographer says:

    Let’s keep it real here folks. Everyone who ever went through those gates up there knew, immediately after introduction, that Q was touchy feely.

    • Wow! So many knew but so few spoke. Those who kept quiet bear some responsibility for Brangman’s evil. Thing is photographer seems to be proud that he and others remained silent thereby becoming passive enablers.

    • watchfuleyes says:

      Yes but what about those who were going in who did not know, who were going in innocent and naive? What about those men who may have been raped at knife point? Is this acceptable to Bermuda? Is it acceptable because they are males? Is this acceptable because they are not your sons, nephews,or brothers? Shame on you Bermuda for turning a blind eye. No can say they didn’t know this was happening because BAD was telling the whole of Bermuda. But unfortunately some chose to distract people by making personal attacks, or criticizing Mr. Marshall instead of dealing with the Human aspect of the situation. So now lets try and figure out how to correct what the Regiment may have tried to cover up, and get justice for these victims, oh sorry alleged victims.

  12. swing voter says:

    Its up to me if I want some weirdo to pat my azz or feel my balzz ….no way am I jus gonna take that silently. cam phone, mini tape recorder, or a fellow recruit hiding in the closet watchin and listening to corroborate the truth. Gov’ment got off lucky cuz those ‘victims’ were too scared of dopey to entrap the weirdos up there. I for one wouldn’t have had to work another day in my entire life.

  13. Django unchained says:

    I am moved by the decision to have this matter properly investigated. Question, why only a single point of contact to investigate such serious allegations from one of our security services. Also I am concerned by the Governors remarks that he is confident that the Regiment did a thorough investigation prior to Mr. Brangman being forced to retire. As far as I am aware the Bermuda Regiment does not have the expertise or highly trained officers to investigate such serious allegation. I would ask that from now on from te Governor down we stop sugar coating issues to save face. Let’s call a spade a spade. If heads need to roll then so be it.

  14. Truth is killin' me... says:

    There was a few touchy feelies up at that place mate. Touchy feelies that went on to high paying jobs elsewhere!

  15. James Rego says:

    Gavin Shorto ?
    Alan Rance ?
    David Burch 1994 – 1997
    Patrick Outerbridge 1997 – 2001
    David Gibbons ?

    Commanding Officers of the Bermuda Regiment during Brangman’s reign of terror. Gibbons finally did something about him.