Minister Caines On Police Complaints Decision

August 11, 2017

[Updated] “Disturbing and lacking the closure only proper accountability can bring,” is the view expressed by Minister of National Security Wayne Caines after his review of the decision of the Police Complaints Authority about the police use of pepper spray during the protests on December 2nd 2016 at the House of Assembly.

In making their decision, the Police Complaints Authority 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 Minister said, “Ordinary citizens rely on public bodies and institutions to ensure accountability for actions taken and decisions made. People must have confidence that where one body gets it wrong, another will make it right.

“I have shared my views on the Decision with the PCA’s Chairman, the Governor and the Commissioner. There is a way forward but that starts with accountability for what the PCA refers to as the ‘lack of planning and poor communication’ that led to the events of this terrible day.

“I will continue to discuss the issue of accountability with the Governor and the Commissioner,” Minister Caines said.

“Both this Decision and the National Police Coordination Centre [NPoCC] Report of January 2017 speak to significant needs within the BPS related to planning and training. The Commissioner’s acceptance of and action on the recommendations is an important and encouraging step in the process.

“I am committed to supporting the Commissioner and his senior command team in securing that training as we must ensure that this kind of event does not happen again.”

Update 6.54pm: Commissioner of Police Michael A. DeSilva said, “The Bermuda Police Service acknowledges the findings in the independent report of the Police Complaints Authority. We accept the determination that police officers did not act negligently or with misconduct is an appropriate finding based on the evidence, much of which was seen and circulated in the public domain.

“In terms of the views expressed about the mistakes made by senior police commanders, most of this was thoroughly covered in the NPoCC report earlier this year and therefore does not come as a surprise. In my statement in March in reply to the NPoCC report, I acknowledged the findings of the report and I accepted the ten recommendations it made. I took responsibility to correct the deficiencies that were identified in the areas of training, planning, command, communication, tactics, and stakeholder engagement. Much of the work has already been undertaken, and more training is being delivered later this year.

“I also acknowledge that the events of 2nd December left some members of our community feeling angry about the action we took, and disconnected from the police. We continue to work to heal that wound by demonstrating that we have taken the lessons on board. We know that the ability of the police to do our job effectively relies on strong trust and support from the public. To that end, we have been working to strengthen that trust by doing things differently. We will continue to implement all the recommendations of the NPoCC report and we will do our part to manage protests appropriately in Bermuda.”

The 11-page PCA document follows below [PDF here]:

click here Bermuda protest on Dec 2nd

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Comments (50)

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  1. Jus' Askin' says:


    This is NOT GOOD!!!

    No One has to Answer to what had happened?!?

    • Larry says:

      Ikr! You’re talking about the protestors who blocked the HoA and people who assaulted the police, right?

      • Onion says:

        Or the politicians and union leaders who mislead people into protesting against the best value for money option?

    • Blind Sheep says:

      There is an answer, sadly it was not the one you was hoping for.

  2. imjustsayin says:

    The Police rushed the protesters what do you expect the protesters to do. They were not threatening life or property so why attack them You don’t see Police in other jurisdiction rushing the crowd unless they are threatening lives and property. Yes they we’re breaking the law but they also have the right to protest. It was peaceful until the Police bum rushed them. No matter how the pro Police spin it. Take pictures ID them and send out warrants.

    • Cow Polly says:

      I’m sure you saw the video of the protestor with the stick/umbrella hitting the policeman or does not that count? You admit they were breaking the law and the police are heard on the video asking very politely for the protestors to move. At that point they moved from peaceful protestors to unruly mob

    • Blind Sheep says:

      And others will say the police was just doing their jobs. The sad reality is that both parties were in the wrong and no one wants to take accountability. One party acted illegally with justification, while the party was legally correct in their approach, but communicated poorly. At the end of the day legal dies not always means it is always right, illegal does not mean it is always wrong. It is a matter of who has the b@lls to be accountable.

    • Whatt says:

      The protesters were breaking the law, wake up to reality.

    • OJ ? says:

      if someone was blocking your driveway and you asked them to move and they didnt what would you do? Then if they ahouted obsenities at you , how would you react? if those same people hit you and threatened you, would you just take it?

      The policw disnt rush anyone! You could easily see them and hear them. Stop witb the BS. They trued to reason with the law breakers. Tes that is what they were. They were illegaly and intentionally blocking a public road, the HOA , threatening people and diarupting the peace.

      What would you do if lets say 1000 people secided today to block tbe BIU, Burt or Tweeds House? Call the police ? Thats who came? Or would you react and take matters into your own hands? Whats the answer. PLP has them all.

    • cpm says:

      You just said they were lawbreakers so why are you surprised at our police service responding.
      Minister Caines has now alienated his Police supporters, but again who is pulling the strings in the plp

  3. imjustsayin says:

    And further more that officer was spraying people like that were bugs.What he thought that were going to run away. He put himself in that situation. Really disgusting. Totally unessesary. And that so called commission, should be ashamed and should resign.

    • Cranberry says:

      Well they were all being attracted to the light..??

    • Mark says:

      Reason and logic dont register wih you do they?

      • OJ ? says:

        with thw logic of some heee and their respect of the laws that we must all abise by, its no surpriswethat our prisons are getting fuller.

  4. OBA NO WAY UBP NO WAY says:

    The Police got off and the people got off in Court. Sounds good. The Oba/ubp is the real blame and they were informed on July 18th. Chase them crazy ball heads out of town!

    • ramblings says:

      exactly HOW are the OBA to blame? The people to blame are those that were breaking the law by blocking Parliament, and those that encouraged their action.

      • OBA NO WAY UBP NO WAY says:

        PLP 24 vs oba/ubp 12………..LOLOLOLOL Bald Heads get out of town!!!
        Message sent July 18th (:

        • fu says:

          “LOLOLOLOL Bald Heads get out of town!!!”

          what are you, 12?

          • Eyes wide open says:

            One must assume you don’t know much about Blk culture or Bob Marley.


            Them crazy, them crazy
            We gonna chase those crazy
            Baldheads out of town
            Chase those crazy baldheads
            Out of town

            I and I build a cabin
            I and I plant the corn
            Didn’t my people before me
            Slave for this country

            Now you look me with a scorn
            Then you eat up all my corn
            We gonna chase those crazy baldheads
            Chase them crazy
            Chase those crazy baldheads out of town

            Build your penitentiary, we build your schools
            Brainwash education to make us the fools
            Hate is your reward for our love
            Telling us of your God above
            We gonna chase those crazy
            Chase those crazy bunkheads
            Chase those crazy baldheads out of town

            Here comes the conman
            Coming with his con plan
            We won’t take no bribe, we got to stay alive

            We gonna chase those crazy
            Chase those crazy baldheads
            Chase those crazy baldheads out of town

            • therock says:

              Bob Marley was a man of peace, you are just another silly pawn who doesn’t understand what you preach.

          • rumsoak says:

            They are all 12

        • Mark says:


    • Jus' Wonderin' says:

      Ya got some baldheads in the PLP/UBP too chase dem out!

      • Mark says:

        Lol. Theyre all baldheads!

        • Ringmaster says:

          “baldheads” now own Bermuda thanks to the PLP running up the debt. They are not local families. You may want to think about that.

  5. ramblings says:

    “Disturbing and lacking the closure only proper accountability can bring,” This is the kind of comment that I expected to see when I read the results. A comment from a Minister who is supposed to be in a position to “work with” the police and not disagree with the independent review board.

    Unfortunately, this shows exactly why he should not hold this position

    • Breathe says:

      So, having campaigned on this issue, you expect him to now just roll over and say nothing ? If the Police can’t handle criticism then they’re in the wrong business. And as their Minister and the guy in charge of their funding this is EXACTLY what he should be saying. May I remind you, 24-12 isn’t a message to be silent, its a mandate to govern.

      • ramblings says:

        So what he is saying the is that it’s OK to break the law.. Great, glad you explained!!

        • princess says:

          Rambling: Slavery was legal, apartheid was legal and colonialism was legal. Legal does not mean right but it can mean immoral and unjust.

          • Zevon says:

            It’s not immoral to block Parliament using violence?

      • ella says:

        thank you breathe! could not have said it any better!! much appreciated!

    • ella says:

      and you need to shut up!

  6. sandgrownan says:

    FFS. Give it up. The PLP/People’s Campaign and their union crews got exactly what they wanted. The Police were outsmarted and OBA paid the price.

    You won, move on.

    • Green Every Day says:

      Sorry we can’t hear you obaer. LMAO which ubp mp are you that got the boot on election day?

  7. San Geoge says:

    Canines need say no more – you just won hearts and minds. Perception is reality! Just make people think you care! You will go far.

  8. Stevie says:

    To those who commented above stating the OBA were at fault. Wrong you plp/ biu. You caused the problem not letting both sides of the house to do their job. Get a life. The police stopped you. They did their job. Grow up.

  9. Silence Do Good says:

    Where is the People’s Campaign now?

    • Green Every Day says:

      Drinking the koolaid of success. Even the sun looks beautiful under the green skies. LOLOLOLOL. Bermudians are happy again. We got tired of sour milk man.

      • aceboy says:

        What exactly has changed? Let’s see at the end of 100 days if anything has really happened. I doubt it seeing the effort being made here.

  10. Zevon says:

    This coming from a government which has ministers who were leading the illegal blocking of the Parliament that they now sit in.
    You couldn’t make it up could you.

  11. Smiths says:

    Quite disappointing. Rule of Law… As the Minister he should also mention that folks need to abide by the Law. Doesn’t give me much confidence in the Minister (hes’ afraid to say so). Doesn’t bode well for the future!

  12. puzzled says:

    EB must have a hangover every night.
    His plan is working like clockwork.

  13. Real Onion says:

    Wayne Caines is NOT fit to hold this office and has NO experience!

    • Really says:

      He has as much experience as Michael Dunkley did in 2012/13 when he became the Minister. Milkman vs qualified lawyer, former prosecutor, top CEO (of a competitive entity and not a family monopoly), successful business consultant, husband and father….but yeah, he has no experience. Say what you really mean and what we really hear……

    • Ringmaster says:

      Probably just saying what his brother tells him to say. Nothing like a conflict of interest.

  14. Bermy greens says:

    So far I see no new jobs for the people just a pile of bull kaka. When oba was in blame them for everything gang violence loss of jobs lies everything.. plp get in blame the parents of the kids ….lol people been sayin that for years.decriminialize herb … that’s a joke they come up with some new sh!tz… plp full of kaka have been for years and still are we will all see soon enough I will be ready to protest on any lawn outside any business don’t worry plp I got ya message loud and clear I’m standing firm Cause Rastafaria Stands Alone …….

  15. aceboy says:


    The election is over. You won.


    What do you want? Control over the police? No way will that happen.

    So stop with the politics and GET ON WITH IT!

    • sandgrownan says:

      And don’t screw it up again with incompetence.

  16. Antlee says:

    To be ckear only one segment was acring illegally and that was the protesters, who to be fair may have thought they were acting within their rights, but had ample instruction towards the contrary by the time things really got heated. If the new Minister wishes to emphasise the necessity of accountability he needs to not be one-sided in his stance. Charges were dropped (after minimal pursuit) against the protestors and now it has been stated that reports of misconduct are inactionable. If the police were acting within their scope of service why should they be charged, especually when accountability was already accepted at the senior level??? The only thing left to do is make improvements where possible and the Police Commissioner has already vowed to do just that.