Most Read Contributor in Cayman Islands, September 2016
Conservation officers from the Department of Environment (DoE)
recently completed a series of courses in order to implement new
provisions of the National Conservation Law, which expand their
powers to protect the marine and terrestrial environment.
The officers now have enhanced enforcement capabilities,
including powers of arrest, seizure of vessels and vehicles used in
the commission of an offence, and the ability to carry defensive
equipment including batons, pepper spray and Tasers.
The courses were conducted by the Royal Cayman Islands Police
Service (RCIPS) Training Unit staff, and covered topics such as
effecting an arrest, welfare and care of suspects, reasonable use
of force, and the use of defensive equipment. In conjunction with
the training, the DoE developed comprehensive operating procedures
for the use and security of arms, incident reporting and
investigations following use of force, and standards for
'The safety of the conservation officers has long been a
concern for DoE as they often conduct single-man patrols and, in
the past, officers have been attacked and threatened with violence.
Thanks to the support and assistance of the RCIPS, we hope that
introducing non-lethal defensive weapons will reduce the
reoccurrence of these types of incidents.
'Although it is hoped that the equipment will primarily
serve as a deterrent, the DoE is particularly pleased with the
provision of Tasers which incorporate a video camera to record an
incident. The video and audio recordings serve to protect both the
officer and the suspect, and ensure use of the Taser is
justified', said DoE Deputy Director for Operations and
Enforcement Scott Slaybaugh.
From left, Conservation
Officer Carl Edwards, Conservation Officer Maggie
Baldino, RCIPS Sergeant/Instructor Richard Laws, Conservation
Officer Sean Ladley, DoE Director Gina Ebanks-Petrie, DoE Deputy Director Scott
Slaybaugh, Conservation Enforcement Supervisor Ronnie Dougall, Chief
Conservation Officer Mark Orr, Conservation Officer Chadd Bush, RCIPS Constable /
Instructor Gabe Rabess. Not pictured Conservation Officer Leonard Hydes and
Conservation Officer Sister Islands Erbin Tibbetts.
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