Richplain lockdown illegal

By Sean Douglas and Andre Bagoo
Wednesday, June 25 2008

ArmyTHE Law Association yesterday questioned the legality of the “lock down” of Richplain by the Defence Force who set up camp in the Diego Martin community after the Father’s Day murder of Corporal Ancil Wallace and his best friend Noel Charles.

Soldiers pitched a camp at a savannah at Angies Field Road in Richplain, two days after Cpl Wallace and Charles were killed during the christening party for Wallace’s son Jaydon on June 15. There have since been reports by residents of beatings by the soldiers and the detention of several persons in the absence of the police.

The Council of the Law Association met yesterday in a special session, nine days after the murder, to let their views be heard.

In a signed statement, president of the Law Association, Martin Daly SC, said the Defence Force has no legal right to use emergency powers in the absence of a constitutionally-declared state of emergency.
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1 Responses to “Richplain lockdown illegal”

  • Catherine Brooks

    Similar to the Richplain lockdown, a small W.DC community called Trinidad, where homes average $350,000, and where the homeowners are hard working people [teachers, accountants, federal and city government workers, truck drivers and others], experienced on June 5, 2008,the African-American Mayor and “Anglo-female” Chief of Police, announcement of a lockdown of this [W.DC, Trinidad] community to contain and stop the violent crimes committed on the residents. It was reported that prior to the DC-Officials’ announced lockdown, in just one weekend, seven slayings had occurred. The Chief of Police was on spot on the first week-end with the police officers, and all drivers through the community had to stop and give Driver’s and other ID’s to the Police. All ID’s were checked—if you had no driving/vehicles’ insurance, you were arrested and vehicles were impounded—and the wrecker was right there to load and carry the cars off to the impound lots. If you had bench warrants—off to the lockup until you saw a Judge. Stopped drivers had to answer questions about why they were in the community—what were their destination, and why were the Trinidad streets/homes locations their destination? Of course the American Civil Liberties Union [ACLU] issued a statement on this “check-point Charlie” strategy, albeit to save human lives. And we know there will be legal actions to come—and so be it! This W.DC strategy is a 1996 New York City crime fighting strategy that worked and the NY Federal Appeals Court upheld the city’s right to utilize this crime fighting initiative. We in our beloved city understand that people cannot live under the terror of these young criminals who grew up in the very homes among the very residents they are torturing. These criminals did not choose schools over the streets. They were the hip-hip fools who did not make it big with whatever their fool-dreams were for making it big without first getting a great education to sustain success in the society. God help them all! So, we applaud the Mayor and the Police Chief for protecting the law abiding citizens. I pray this bold strategy is what the government of Trinidad and Tobago will possibly consider and hopefully embrace for the entire country and I pray that the Regiment will continue to be a national guard force and camp out with the Police Service in all regions of Trinidad to secure the peace for the people of my birth country. God help us! Please!

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