Accusations of police brutality are again being leveled against members of the Royal Police Force of Antigua & Barbuda (RPFAB).
Curtis James told our newsroom on Wednesday morning that the beating landed him at the Mount St. John’s Medical Centre where he received stitches to his mouth.
While recounting what occurred at around 1:30 am on Sunday, the 31 years old told ZDK News that he was on his way to take a taxi home from a club near Bargain Centre at Perry Bay when he was allegedly dragged into a Police vehicle.
“After I stepped into the club I realized that it wasn’t all that so i said i was going to catch a cab and go home. After I got by the taxi stand, a police car pulled up with two officers inside…one of them pulled me into the vehicle and started beating me. I asked him what I did and he replied, If I love trouble people woman… I asked him what are you talking about and every time I talk i get hit in my mouth.”
The alleged victim said that while being beaten by the officer, who was not in uniform during the alleged attack, he threatened to kill him with a gun and also tried to stab him.
“They had me driving around in circles beating me and he said, “You just wah me kill you..” then he pulled a knife and he tried to stab me in my chest but I blocked him with my hand and I sprained my finger.”
According to James, after requesting to be taken back to where he supposedly interfered with the woman, the uniformed officer driving the vehicle returned to the location and after speaking with a woman outside the club, he apparently signalled to the officer at the back of the vehicle, that it may have been the wrong person. He said the last thing he remembered was being ‘gun but’.
“I woke up at the hospital with a Police officer next to my bed and I don’t how I got there. I got stitches in my mouth, my face is all swollen and i cant eat on the left side of my mouth.”
The Pares resident told our newsroom that his attack did not end there. He said he was taken to the police station under the assumption that he was going to make a report but ended up being arrested, held overnight and then charged with assault.
“After seeing the doctor, he said to them take me home because I need some rest. Two officers from the Gray’s Farm Police Station came for me saying their gonna take me to make a report…(despite being advised by the doctor and the police officer that was sitting at my bed to take me home), and instead of making a report and go home and rest myself, they lock me up.”
“I slept there the Saturday night and on the Sunday morning and two lawyers (he referred to Bowen and Cumberbatch) came and told them the I cannot be here like this and that is when they came and charged me for assaulting a female and released me about 10 o’clock…they said is was an officer.”
James first aired the allegations on ZDK’s Your Views which sparked an outrage from other callers to the program. He said he has not seen the officers, who can identify by name, since the attack nor has he seen the woman he supposedly assaulted.