Oscar Bartholomew family not happy with charges

Spokes person for the family of Oscar Bartholomew, the man who died after being beaten by Grenada police said the family is disappointed with the  degree of the charges that have been laid on five local police officers accused of causing his death.

Devon Rachae, says the family would have preferred the charge of murder.

On Sunday afternoon, police issued a statement saying that a total of five police officers have been charged with manslaughter in the December 27th death of visiting Canadian resident Oscar Bartholomew.  The statement also said the investigation was continuing.

But Rachae, says the family feels there was enough evident to convict them of murder.

“There is enough evidence from the eyewitness accounts and the second autopsy to charge them with murder,” Rachae said.

“This is like a slap in the face of the family.”

The first two charges were made on Saturday, following the receipt of statements from two eyewitnesses and the report of the second autopsy by Trinidadian pathologist Hubert Daisley, which showed multiple body wounds. The other three charges were made on Sunday.

The police officers charged are constables Edward Gibson, Shaun Ganness, Ruddy Felix, Kenton Hazzard and Wendell Sylvester.

All are being charged jointly and are to make their first court appearances on Tuesday 3rd January, 2012.

Meanwhile, Rachae says another protest is being planned for the courtyard on Tuesday. He said they will keep up the protest action in an attempt to get all  the police officers who were on duty at the time, removed from active duty and charged.

Police Commissioner Wilan Thompson, in a media briefing on Thursday said all of the police officers who were on duty at the St. David’s Police Station during the time of the incident would be re-assigned pending the outcome of the investigation. The head of the police station, whose name was withheld from the media,  has been already reassigned. Commissioner Thompson added that they are investigating the whereabouts of the head of the station, while the assault on Bartholomew was taking place.©

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