A Police Constable, who has been serving the Force for over ten years, has claimed he was badly beaten and his family, including his 10-year-old daughter, terrorised in a mysterious Joint Services operation.
Constable Carloid Austin, 33, has claimed that a large group of Police, Army, SWAT Unit, and other ranks descended on his home last Thursday night, but up to news time he remained unaware why.
Crime Chief Wendell Blanhum, in an interview with News Room, said he was aware of an operation but could not disclose the nature of it; he said he was also unaware that any assault took place during the operation.
Constable Austin is stationed in the construction unit of the Police Force at Eve Leary and usually goes home to his Powis Crescent home at Amelia Ward, Linden on the weekends.
However, he travelled up to Linden Wednesday night because he was required to be at the McKenzie Police Station to deal with a matter on Thursday, which he completed during the day. On Thursday, at about 21: 30 hrs, his wife, Ravin Austin, said they were sitting at home when they noticed about 60 heavily armed ranks outside.
She said they noticed about 15 of the ranks then emerging with heavy weapons and shields and were heading up the stairs. At this point, she said her husband opened the door to inquire what was happening. As soon as he did that, she claimed, the ranks used their guns to hit Constable Austin in the head, threw him to the ground and began beating him. Others then began ransacking the house, including using their weapons to poke the ceiling, destroying it in the process. She said other ranks held guns to her head and their daughter.
She said when they began inquiring what was happening, one of the ranks shouted: “We come to kill!” Mrs Austin said her daughter was visibly traumatised and when she attempted to move over to comfort her she was told: “Don’t f**king move!” Her husband was then handcuffed and dragged down the stairs and put into a vehicle. Mrs Austin said when she rushed down the stairs to see what was happening she was told: “Go and bring a f***king shirt for your husband.” Mrs Austin said she complied, but was stunned when she saw the shirt placed over her husband’s head and the ranks sped away with him.
The Constable said he later realised he was taken to Milly’s Hideout, an isolated area, and beaten while a plastic bag was tied over his head. He was later taken to the McKenzie station where the handcuffs were removed and he was told to make his way home.
However, he refused, pleading that he was barefooted, had no money and the distance from McKenzie to Amelia’s ward was too far for him to walk. One of the vehicles used in the operation eventually dropped him off at a “short cut” where he made his way home. His wife visited the McKenzie Police station on Friday, but was told to travel to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) in Georgetown if she wanted any details of what transpired and why.
In Georgetown, Constable Austin, Mrs Austin and their daughter gave statements to the CID, but at news time, they were still at a loss as to why they were terrorised. Crime Chief Blanhum said that Constable Austin is aware of the Standing Operating Procedures and hence knows what action he should take. Also, he said the wife can lodge her account with the Police Complaints Authority for the matter to be investigated.