Well-known activist says she feels threatened after assault

The truck in question (photos contributed)
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A popular businesswoman and activist is calling on the country’s lawmen to do better by citizens, especially when they are called to come to the aid of citizens who need their assistance.

Fifty-six-year-old Mary John, who was allegedly assaulted by a male at a gas Station early Thursday afternoon, said the police answered her calls but no one ever showed up to the scene of the attack.

John, who said she was in pain following the attack, told Observer she was at the gas station to take pictures of what she described as improper storage of bulk waste on a truck.

“I thought it would be best if loose garbage was bagged because the more the garbage was loaded the more the wind blew it away,” said John.

Mary John (photos contributed)

She said the situation quickly escalated after the men began verbally abusing her, and she began videotaping the incident when the older of the two men whom she alleged was the owner of the truck, pulled his pants down and mooned her.   

The man soon took the assault further and approached John physically assaulted her.

“He rushed me with his right fist clenched, pushed my van door which was open onto my body while I stood in between the open door and my van and grabbed my left hand squeezing it tightly while attempting to grab my phone from my right hand,” she said. “The man then struck me on the left side of my head.”

John reportedly called the St John’s Police Station at around 1:30 pm and requested assistance after the assault. The officer, she said, told her someone would call her when they were on the way, but no one came.

John said she subsequently contacted the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), and was directed to go to Police Headquarters on American Road, where she was further instructed that the matter is for Minor Offenses on Newgate Street. 

She was driven to St John’s Police Station where an officer took her report and gave her a Medical Examination Form to take to the doctor with instructions to return to Minor Offenses Friday morning. 

Yesterday, she said, when the head of the Minor Offenses Department received John’s form he told her that his department is short-staffed and that someone would call her to take a statement.

Up to press time at 4 pm Friday afternoon, John said she had not been contacted by the police, and added that she feels threatened and violated by the incident.

She is also concerned that if an example was not made of her attacker, someone else may feel entitled to attack her for whatever reason.

Observer media reached out to Police Public Relations Officer Inspector Frankie Thomas who said that once John submitted her medical form, the police would have begun looking into the report and investigations into the matter would follow.

Thomas took the opportunity to remind the public that if they are assaulted, threatened, or handled in an aggressive way, the matter should be reported to police.

These offences, though simple can lead to more serious incidents if the matter goes unreported, Thomas added.

John said that for the past 14 years, she has been a strong advocate against littering and the illegal disposal of garbage and bulk waste.

“I have called on authorities to manage removal and disposal of waste properly. I have spent over $20,000 of my own money during the process,” she added.

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