Police Commissioner Gary Griffith

Police Commissioner Gary Griffith has denied that a homeless man had been ticketed and fined by the police, describing this as another story that had been overblown on social media.

Griffith was at the time speaking on an I95.5FM radio programme yesterday.

“Let me just clarify, the report that I have, homeless people do not have an address. The individuals (who were ticketed) have an address. They were gainfully employed. They were collecting funds from certain departments in the state. They were not homeless,” said the Commissioner, who explained the Police were to giving masks to the homeless rather than tickets.

Griffith also used his time on the programme to issue a further call for Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley to be properly advised on the law.

“The Minister of National Security, the Minister of Health and the Attorney General should brief the Prime Minister to correct his inaccurate perception that the police can do more than we are doing,” said Griffith during the interview.

The Commissioner again claimed that the Prime Minister was misinformed like many on social media who had commented on the matter based on emotion and not fact.

Griffith said the situation became inflammatory because of the perception of classism.

“It becomes an issue and a front-page of a newspaper because they see people of a lighter skin complexion. They then say this is one per cent. There was nobody there who was White, Syrian or Lebanese. These were Venezuelans. Why would the police have bias not to arrest Venezuelans? We have been doing that constantly over the past few weeks, the past few months,” said the Commissioner.

The Commissioner also confirmed that they were still pursuing a woman who posted to social media claiming, while on a beach, that she was on private property.

Griffith said, however, given the fact that there was video evidence of her on the beach, she could be arrested as the video serves as evidence of a criminal breach.