Carnival 2020 has been declared “the safest one ever”.
After months of planning and strategizing, TTPS Gold Commander for Carnival 2020, Acting DCP Jayson Forde, said he was happy to report that only eight incidents were recorded during the Carnival period, of which two were violent crimes.
Compared to the previous years, Acting DCP Forde said this was the lowest number of incidents recorded during the Carnival period in this country’s history. In 2018, 24 serious crimes were reported while in 2019 that figure was 12.
Forde said he was happy to see that even the criminal elements cooperated.
“Our arrests have been down this year… we told them to stay at home, leave your weapons at home, come and have clean fun which they did”, he said. A total of 67 persons were arrested during Carnival Monday and Tuesday but 21 persons were yet to be charged.
According to the Acting DCP, women “in the skimpiest of clothing” were seen walking through “darkened areas”. This he stated showed that the women felt “a level of safety that might have been unprecedented”.
Police Commissioner Gary Griffith told the media approximately 95 per cent of the police service showed up for work during the season. He warned that absent officers will be required to meet with him to provide an explanation as to “why they abandoned their post” and will be disciplined.
Commissioner Griffith also warned that officers who used TTPS vehicles to moonlight will also be disciplined.
He said, “I actually encountered it as well when I was involved in the flow of traffic heading out of Chaguaramas with police vehicles being used to escort individuals, especially questionable individuals”.
The Police Commissioner also had a tongue-lashing for those officers who allowed masqueraders to wine on them. He referred to an incident in which a police officer’s motorbike was damaged while three women wined on him.
Griffith said, “I’ll hear people say what was the police officer expected to do but had it been three men what would he have done”.
While there were no major incidents this year, the Commissioner said he is hoping bandleaders will be more cooperative next year.
He noted many of them are still not heeding his advice to ensure their bands get back to base by 7 pm to ensure their patrons’ safety.
Overall, Commissioner stated he was proud of the work of his team and thanked the public for cooperating with the police officers.
“When we reach a situation in Trinidad and Tobago where the biggest incident that can be viewed by the whole country is an elbow wrestling competition between Iwer George and the spouse of a world-class entertainer it shows that we have succeeded”, he added.