Police review how they handle crime reports after ‘inaction’ complaint
The Bermuda Police Service has reviewed the way it handles reports of crime by the public after a woman complained of “inaction” over her stolen motorcycle.
Commissioner of Police Stephen Corbishley launched a “full review” earlier this month when Nikki Gerrior claimed in a post on social media that officers refused to view video footage of her motorcycle being stolen.
Mr Corbishley said he “read with concern” her post on June 2 saying that when she reported the theft, police did not attend the scene and told her to “keep a look out for it”.
Responding to questions from The Royal Gazette, Mr Corbishley said: “Whilst it is not unreasonable to ask a member of the public, who may notify us of CCTV material, to initially inform us what it contains, it was clear in this case a follow up action was required and I am pleased with comments I received from Ms Gerrior with regard to our subsequent response.
“The BPS deals with community issues on a 24 hour basis and on the odd occasion, the advice given may need to be revisited. As such, we have reviewed our practices with station duty officers and non-emergency call handlers’ response.”
Mr Corbishley said he asked officers to attend Ms Gerrior’s residence in support of the investigation which was “to the satisfaction of the victim”.
Ms Gerrior confirmed that police visited her the day after the crime and were "helpful and apologetic“.
She wrote an updated post at the time saying: “They’re viewing the security footage and walking the neighbourhood. That neighbourhood walk may have done more yesterday when we initially called so hopefully the policy will change and they will come to the scene when called.”
Mr Corbishley stressed the value of CCTV footage in helping to identify the perpetrators of crime. However, he advised members of the public to hand such evidence in to the police rather than posting it on social media.
“The reason for this is twofold,” Mr Corbishley said. “Firstly, there are rules of evidence in relation to identification that must be followed in the justice process and secondly, there may be some occasions where a person has acted innocently and has been wrongly presented across social media.”