Acting Commissioner of Police, Darrin Simons has commended the officers who had to restrain members of the public who tried to stop them from making arrests over the Cup Match holiday weekend.
In a statement released last night and embargoed until 8am this morning, he said several officers were assaulted by members of the public while trying to break up fights, including an attack by two women on Front Street.
That incident occurred while police tried to break up a fight between several other females.
The two women who tried to stop the officers were subsequently arrested.
The Full Statement:
The return of the Cup Match Classic and the festive mood this brings was a welcomed addition to the summer calendar. Things went pretty smoothly at the game.
In addition to officers arresting a man carrying a suspected firearm (not part of the Somerset motorcade), other incidents over the long holiday weekend required a police response.
Troublingly, the safety of our officers was threatened as they were assaulted by members of the public whilst bravely performing their duty.
This meant officers had to take protective measures for their safety and the safety of others.
In one instance, officers intervened to break up an altercation and disperse a crowd during a fight at Darrell’s Wharf, Paget.
Officers were forced to deploy their taser to bring a 27-year-old man under control.
Some individuals from among the large crowd became hostile toward the two officers.
The two officers called for urgent assistance from their colleagues who arrived to help bring the crowd under control and assist with the arrest of the 27-year-old man and a 23-year-old man.
None of the suspects were injured during the arrest. However, one officer sustained minor injuries to his hand.
Police officers also responded to a disturbance on Front Street where several females were involved in an altercation.
As officers separated the individuals involved they were assaulted by two females, resulting in their arrest.
Darrin Simons, Acting Commissioner of Police said: “I was impacted by the number of incidents where aggression or violence was used against officers. Some of these played out on social media. Several persons are in custody pending court appearances.
“Our job is hard. And I am always proud when we face adversity and aggression, confidently and professionally. None of us signed up to be assaulted but we know this can and does happen.
“The Bermuda Police Service, will always support officers when they appropriately use their training, tools and tactics to deal with these situations that are too often aggravated by groups of onlookers who both threaten and obstruct them in the performance of their duty.
“I wish to thank each member of the Service who played a role in making this a safe weekend. Particularly, those that had to show commitment and courage under very trying circumstances.
“I also take this opportunity to remind the public that they have a duty to assist the police and it is always best to comply with the lawful instructions of a police officer – if you can’t help; don’t hinder.
“If you believe the officer was wrong, you should raise any performance matter with the on-duty Incident Commander 24hrs a day (295-0011, ask for the incident commander) or our Professional Standards Department. I assure you that we have robust accountability measures in place to address your concerns.
“Despite some difficult incidents, Bermuda is a very safe place to live, work and play, and we are proud of that. The vast majority of our community responds appropriately to officers doing their job. However, there is a very small minority that needs to be reminded that it is an offense to obstruct or assault an officer in the lawful execution of her or his duty.”