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New deputy commissioner sworn in

New Deputy Commissioner Darrin Simons (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

A professional standards supremo is to help root out bad apples in the police, the service’s second-in-command said yesterday.The Deputy Commissioner of Police, Darrin Simons, said: “We’re putting some energy into that.” Mr Simons was speaking at a press conference as he was introduced in his new position as the new deputy commissioner.Mr Simons said that talks had taken place over several incidents that involved officers who had been charged or were under investigation.He added: “It must be acknowledged that certainly in my career, I have never seen this level.” Mr Simons was sworn in by John Rankin, the Governor, in a ceremony at Government House last month.Former police officer Kyle Wheatley was jailed for 2½ years on December 10, after he admitted to dumping traffic tickets for his own profit. Stephen Corbishley, the Commissioner of Police, said at the time that investigations continued into a separate “serious” allegation for which two officers had been arrested and suspended last month. Mr Corbishley said that a case that involved two other officers, who have also been suspended, continued.Mr Corbishley said the investigation involved “corrupt behaviour”. Mr Simons said that the “overwhelming, vast majority” of police officers “walk with integrity, do their job professionally, and value their work within the community”. He added that the service had worked to increase focus on the police code of ethics. Mr Simons said: “I think as a result more things are being reported.” He said that as deputy commissioner he would be responsible for professional standards, human resources and performance management. The 27-year veteran said that he was pleased to take up a permanent position after serving in an acting capacity for several months. He added: “When I am given the opportunity to talk about my job, one of the things that I always say is that I really love my job.“There is something noble, honourable, about this profession, in this country, with these people — and I am proud to be part of that.” Mr Simons said that he was a pragmatic person who valued “trust and integrity, who understands the importance of community confidence and the role that plays in making Bermuda safer”. He added: “I am here to help and stand ready to listen.” Mr Simons was announced as the new deputy police commissioner in 2018. Government House said then that he was expected to take up the post last March after he completed the UK College of Policing’s strategic command course.Mr Corbishley said that contractual problems had delayed Mr Simons’s swearing in and that he was “delighted” to now welcome Mr Simons to the post.He said the pair had “forged an exceptional working relationship”. He added: “We departed 2019 with some very successful results, particularly around reducing violent crime. That’s testament to some of the work and leadership that Darrin provided.”