Michael Dunkley On Police Complaints Decision

August 11, 2017

“This report and others unequivocally dispels misinformation to suggest the OBA Government was in any way responsible for BPS actions or for ordering pepper spraying,” MP Michael Dunkley said today, adding that he hopes that “out of this most unfortunate day lessons have been learned and we all work together to make sure this never happens again.”

The Police Complaints Authority recently released their decision, which concluded that “no misconduct can be attributed to Officers at the Parliamentary grounds and thus the complaints received cannot be upheld,” however they added that there “is no question that mistakes were made in the BPS at senior levels.”

The report also stated, “There was no order given by any person in Command that Captor [spray] should be used – in every instance on the 2nd December when Captor was used, it was a decision made by the individual officer. This is in accordance with the Use of Force Policy.”

Following the report’s release, Mr Dunkley — who was Premier at the time this occurred — said, “December 2nd 2016 was a very bad day for Bermuda- a day when political scheming, law breaking and official actions collided to create a day no Bermudian can be happy with.

“The day started with the Sessions House blocked and Members unable to carry out their duty to serve the people. It ended with a most unfortunate confrontation with pepper spray being used.

“Many actions can be questioned and out of this there have been three reports on police actions. There is much to learn from these reports and I have confidence that the BPS will consider all recommendations and take every necessary step to improve policing, protect public safety and enforce the laws of Bermuda for the benefit of all residents.

“I note that this report and others unequivocally dispels misinformation to suggest the OBA Government was in any way responsible for BPS actions or for ordering pepper spraying.

“I also note Minister Caines media release on the report and I quote ‘disturbing and lacking the proper closure only accountability can bring.’ I look forward to his efforts in conjunction with the Governor and the Commissioner. I hope he holds his colleagues accountable.

“I suggest one can not have a complete assessment of Dec 2nd without questioning the actions of everyone involved and that includes members of the PLP. After all, we are all in this together and we must all be responsible for our actions.

“I truly hope that out of this most unfortunate day lessons have been learned and we all work together to make sure this never happens again.”

click here Bermuda protest on Dec 2nd

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Comments (54)

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  1. Real Onion says:

    the plp will never admit they acted wrongly even though many were caught on camera.

    • Unbelievable says:

      The PLP never admit to anything wrong that they do anyway. I don’t expect they begin now.

      • ReallyReally says:

        Dunkley has NO Creditability and still is out of touch with the reality of this situation……he has lost the main reason of why the folks rejected his party so strongly on July 18th, 2017……the old UBP guards are still way off course….really

        • Sara says:

          Are you sure about that? Word on the street is the reason the OBA lost so badly was due to their support of gay marriage.

      • steve says:


      • Get over it, UNBELIEVABLE!!

        • fu says:

          “Get over it, UNBELIEVABLE!!

          Too bad you can’t take your own advice…more hypocrisy from the plp.

    • Wow says:

      Immediately after the event, the country heard little from him, as he seemed to have washed his hands. Now we see a response that appears to be an attempted rewrite of history. So nobody gave the Command. The people of Bermuda voted 2-1 to say he disappointed them and so did the OBA. Never mess with electricity. Michael should ask Bob who got electrocuted.

  2. sage says:

    Publish your call log for the week leading up to and including Dec. 2nd. Barons’ too.

    • Ringmaster says:

      Let’s also have the call logs from Derrick Burgess; Nicholas Genevieve/Tweed; Justin Hayward; David Burt; Walter Robain and all the other PLP and People’s Campaign hierarchy; those that called out “don’t be afraid to be arrested” all the while staying silent to warn some of the public that their actions were illegal. Now many of those are part of the PLP Government. So much for transparency and accountability. No change from 1998-2012.

      • cpm says:

        A bunch of people who do not believe in law and order are now running the country

        • Can't believe it says:

          Another sore loser. Get over it, the OBA lost and lost badly, the people saw through your game and didn’t want any parts of you clowns anymore. Lick your wounds and ride off into the sunset and never to come back. 24/12 what a white washing.

    • Michael Dunkley says:

      Already been done by the full report I gave in the House.

      • cpm says:

        Well done Michael Dunkley
        The country still needs you

      • N.Jones says:

        Why don’t you be real for once and tell the people of Bermuda why you change the name from UBP to oba. If I recall when the UBP lost to the PLP Bermuda had plenty of money and jobs everywhere.

        What was so bad about the UBP that made you and your people change the name?

        The UBP was better at running the Country then the PLP&OBA combined!!!!!!!!!

        • fu says:

          Why does the plp use the word progressive when they’re anything but?

        • Keepin' it Real!...4Real! says:

          Come on now…weren’t you around during that time…The PLP and it’s minions were more intent on defaming the 3 letters UBP…which was the best name ever “United Bermuda Party”…yeah the party which MANY black men or families became successful and was able to give their children what they didn’t have growing up…now we’re dealing with the spoiled generation from thereafter.

      • Whatever says:

        So long, bye bye
        So long, bye bye
        Goodbye to my pain
        And my sorrow
        So long, bye bye

      • Coffee says:

        Dunkeley , you have a trust issue

        People mistrust you

        • The people of BERMUDA HAVE no faith in Dunkley!!
          The worst Premier in the past 2 centuries!!

          • Keepin' it Real!...4Real! says:

            It’s quite evident that you are all backbone and no brain.

    • No Longer A Member says:

      Take off you blinders sir, if you think Mr Burgess, Mr Genevieve, Mr Hayward, Mr Roban, Mr Burt, Dr Brown, Mr DeSilva are honest brokers with genuine interest in Bermuda you have been deceived. For time will tell, and it may be to late. Sad, OBA had a terrible public relations team, but if you think they stole or didn’t care for what was best for the country you definitely bias and naïve. Time will tell.

      • Can't believe it says:

        You have a lot of nerve talking about stealing. The metchants of this country have been ripping of the people for years. Inflated prices of houses, ordinary food items off the chain, clothing also a rip off. You are a bunch of hypocrites.

  3. Really says:

    Why don’t you just disappear sir. You have zero credibility to speak on any issues, least of all this series of events. Can you answer the question why did the Speaker suddenly change his mind and decide to sit on that day? No-one seems to concerned with that because that’s the decision that started this. And i think we can piece together just who NEEDED to have the House sit that day, and it wasn’t the PLP…….

    • Freddy221 says:

      Such a contradicting report police are not held responsible yet no order was given for them to do so

    • steve says:

      ignorant comment of the year.

  4. fu says:

    “Why don’t you just disappear sir. You have zero credibility to speak on any issues,”

    …and you are?

    • Time Shall Tell says:

      The voice of the majority as spoken on July 18th, 2017.

      • Keepin' it Real!...4Real! says:

        I’ll agree with you…The majority rules even if they’re all fools…just because 10 out of 12 people say the same thing doesn’t make them right.

        • Coffee says:

          Unless of course they are defending the pepper spraying of non violent citizens

    • Easter Lily Onion says:

      I was thinking much the same. Mr. Dunkley has twice clawed his way to the leadership of political parties, only to be handed what for anybody else could only be considered as humiliating rejections at the ballot box. Clearly as a leader he is a vote loser.

      • Easter Lily Onion says:

        p.s. I have great difficulty finding any justification in pepper spraying a bunch of middle aged and older folks who right or wrong were staging a peaceful protest and Mr. Caines is quite right in remarking that this report offers no real closure on this unfortunate event. I am reminded of a the very large protest against Dr. Ewerton Brown that was on the Cabinet grounds towards the end of his Premiership; he came out and spoke to the crowd, which is what a real leader would do.

        • Easter Lily Onion says:

          Ewerton…spell check, sorry…

        • fu says:

          “I have great difficulty finding any justification in pepper spraying a bunch of middle aged and older folks who right or wrong were staging a peaceful protest ”

          Maybe you’ll find justification when you admit that they weren’t peaceful, they broke the law and should be punished for it.
          Why do you think you’re above the law? Why do you hate democracy?

          • Easter Lily Onion says:

            Yeah sure, you’re right, I forgot about all those Police beaten to a pulp by the demonstrators. My granny is still boasting about the one whose nose she bloodied after kicking him in the groin…

            • fu says:

              So, your grannys a criminal…and you’re proud of that?…I guess they’re right…thugish behaviour starts in the home.

    • DJ says:

      One of the many voters that helped make a fool out of him with the 24 – 12 victory bashing of the ubp/oba.

  5. Rhonda says:

    The OBA had zero consideration for the welfare of the people on Dec 2…

    I would never be convinced that the then Speaker. .without communication with anyone. ..simply decides to reverse his earlier decision to cancel Parliament…

    The then Speaker is just as much to blame as the OBA..

    • fu says:

      “The OBA had zero consideration for the welfare of the people on Dec 2…”

      yet, it was the plp/biu who pushed them to break the law. And, once again, the OBA doesn’t control the police…..but since you have set a precident…now the plp will be responsible for any perceived wrongdoing by the police.
      It works both ways, pumpkin.

  6. Peter says:

    Intelligence does not respond to dumbness dumb is as dumb does

  7. imjustsayin says:

    Lessons can’t be learned if you don’t admit who’s at fault.

  8. imjustsayin says:

    Basically, the better approach here is not for police to be unprepared for violence, but to understand that showing up in commando garb in preparation for violence tends to make violence inevitable. The better approach, first formalized in police by Washington police chief Jerry Wilson in the early 1970s, is for cops to show up in regular uniforms, and for police leaders to instruct them that their job is not to “keep order” or “prevent rioting,” but to facilitate the free speech rights of the protesters. That flips how cops view their role. They aren’t antagonists to the protesters; they’re nearly allies. It’s a subtle difference, but an important one. You still have your riot team on standby, of course. But you keep them out of view. Wilson would keep them on a bus on a nearby side street.
    Here’s where the militarization of local police becomes so problematic. Officers in full-on riot gear give all the individuals in a protest crowd a common enemy. It’s not that everyone in the protest crowd suddenly assumes the identity of a violent jerk—it’s that the many peaceful protestors feel a sort of kinship with the violent jerks against the aggressive police. Despite their differences, they’re united by a single goal: defend against the outside force.

  9. yisterzia says:

    Forget political parties. People will never admit that we can’t come together as a single community.

  10. Sickofantz says:

    How rude and threatening is the comment by “Really”. His comment sounds like yet another attempt to undermine democracy and stifle free speech. Whatever side of the political divide you sit, I am sure most condemn this kind of censure, concerning an honorable man who only ever did his best for Bermuda.

  11. Realist says:

    To Really….your disrespect is exactly why the December 2nd incident escalated. Despite the election results, Michael Dunkley was an upstanding Premier. Your Premier has a lot to learn about being statesman and accessible to the Bermuda public. I’m watching! I can’t wait to see how events unfold in the next 4 years under the PLP. They will have to uphold the law and not be the rebel rousers of the past. Where will you fit in the new scheme? Maybe you will go away!

  12. Really says:

    The detractors of my earlier response are upset. Good. Your defence of Michael Dunkley and the events of december 2nd includes words like “rude…disrespect….threatening…”. Your 1950s imagery of how black people should conduct themselves (note: i did not say behave) is actually offensive and speaks volumes about why there is a divide in this country.You expect to be able to say all manner of things about us and our leaders with no filter whatsoever but the moment we respond we’re “rude”. Until you recognize that the era of benevolent, oligarchal patrician relations between blacks and whites is over your attitude will continue to stoke the resentment that bubbled over in December. Pay attention: 24-12 is a message not a fluke. So if you think somehow that Michael Dunkley can continue with statements like this and the OBA survive then you are sadly mistaken. Wake up and stay woke!

    • Antlee says:

      It’s not about the OBA, UBP or PLP surviving. It’s about whether or not we as a country will survive. I try to read most comments on these “heated” matters, and the hatred, discord, stubborness, divisiveness and collusion is going to tear our beloved Bermuda to shreds. Our brother is not determined by skin tone….NONE of us is our brother’s keeper, especially not the ones who claim to be the most. The generations to come have not a leg to stand on if they are looking anywhere in the direction of recent Bermuda politics…. Strong leaders need connectivity and integrity. These have been our downfall and will continue to be so until unity is sought after in earnest.

      • Easter Lily Onion says:

        I have to agree with Really: the kindest thing I can say about Michael is that he’s an anachronism, and that is not said kindly. 1950s pastoral about sums him up.

  13. puzzled says:

    RIP Bermuda.
    Well done Mike.

  14. Stupid says:

    It wasn’t done properly, exact infraction and correct response to each eg. Man jumping fence at gate reaching out to jostle policemans collar… Correct proceedeure arrest hopping fence tresspass joslting policemans shirt assault, don’t touch.
    It wasn’t that pepperspray was used… It was used incorrectly.
    If your task is to dispurse a crowd that is unruly and insiteful to possible all out melee….
    You should spray directly on the bottoms of the unruly… I guarantee results…. Entertainment for all as well.
    It sounds mean but that crowd was loud and obnoxious and did was looking like it was leading to more …that behaviour was really really bad and that is why it went that way….if i see a policeman with pepper spray I am not going tou give him a reason to use it… I am walking away. Remember…that policeman doesn’t want to be there it is his job cause and effect. Not all policemen are good… There are worthless louts in there too…. Let’s face it agrevating a fellow with pepperspay in his hand is stupid no matter how you loonk at it.
    But if you want a crowd to dispurse you do not spray them in the face they can’t see to dispurse!
    No… See dat?… Don’t do dat!
    Spray them on their bottom… They will absolutely dispurse…. And everyone can have a good laugh… Just keep a garden hose handy for them… Showem your human side.