Editorial: In this corner

Photo taken from: writinglives.org

Suspended Commissioner of Police, Wendel Robinson, has taken the gloves off in order to defend himself against allegations of misconduct. In a leaked 102-page affidavit, the suspended top cop reveals his defense strategy and launches a host of allegations.  Essentially, the commissioner believes that he is the victim of a vast conspiracy that sought to sideline him because he would not play ball.

Before we go any further, we have to establish a few ground rules when making any sort of comment on the leaked affidavit.  First, the matter is before the court so we shall not offer any opinion, nor shall we host any opinions related to the allegations against the commissioner nor those made by the commissioner.  As well, it should be stated that Robinson has made it clear in a public statement that he is distancing himself from the circulation of his affidavit and has nothing to do with the leak. In fact, he considers the leak, a  “violation of all proper conduct in relation to legal and judicial matters.” Meanwhile, the Attorney General, Steadroy “Cutie” Benjamin, who is the target of several allegations by the commissioner has dismissed the claims as “completely ludicrous.”

The long and short of it, our reference to the affidavit and the allegations shall simply be factual.  With that said, we will get to what we see as a troubling defense strategy adopted by the suspended commissioner.

In a nutshell, Robinson has accused top-level officials and members of the police force of conspiring against him.  The reason offered is his unwillingness to yield to political and other pressures. According to him, the plot came about as a result of his refusal to allow two top government officials to interfere with his work, make demands and dictate to him how he should function in his job.

These are extremely serious allegations and we are more than a bit perplexed as to why the commissioner, who is dedicated to upholding the law, only sees it fit to reveal these allegations of corruption at this time.  Why didn’t he raise the alarm when the pressure was on? As a defense strategy, it is confusing because there seems to be an admission that the commissioner did not do his job when the attempts at improper influence were made.  Should he not have reported the attempts to corrupt the system when they happened either to the public, his superior(s) or the integrity commission? He is, after all, the top cop, so his word carries a bit of weight.

It gets worse.  Robinson claims that he has evidence that he will submit at the appropriate time about the attempts to influence.  Evidence that is so significant that it may have national security implications! What?!? We are talking about national security and the commissioner lets it slide or puts it away for safekeeping until now, when he needs it to defend himself?  What kind of defense strategy is this?

The commissioner’s allegations go further as he claims that there was an offer of $15,000 by opposition elements to someone to make false statements about him and that two officers, who he claims are part of the plot against him, are also making “false” statements about him.“… all part of a concerted effort to discredit me and effect my removal as Commissioner of Police,” says Robinson.

We have just touched the tip of the alleged corruption iceberg that Commissioner Robinson details and the more we read, the more we question this defense strategy. Why are Robinson’s lawyers allowing him to admit that he did nothing when wrongdoing was happening? What is revealed as wrong now was wrong then. This strategy seems to paint him into a dark corner from which it will be hard to escape.  Then again, we are not lawyers, so maybe the brilliance of this strategy will be seen in time as this case unfolds in court.

That said, many people are betting that this will not go much further because it is getting too messy.  They believe that there will be an “amicable” settlement because politicians do no like their linen being washed in public. Those persons who believe that that is the likely outcome certainly have history on their side, but who knows, every day is a new day.

 

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