‘Gladiator’ Crime Chief now a lawyer; says cases will be stronger 

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Wendell Blanhum is one of the newest attorneys to be admitted to the local bar. Being the country’s Crime Chief and is the Deputy Commissioner of Police with responsibility for Law Enforcement, Blanhum explained that his legal knowledge will help to build stronger cases and better understand the courtroom.

His petition to practice law in Guyana was presented before Chief Justice Roxane George S.C. by his wife, attorney Latchmie Rahamat.

“As the Crime Chief and as an attorney-at-law, it’s going to benefit me tremendously in my work as the Deputy Commissioner (Law Enforcement).

“One of my duties entails reviewing crime files to see whether investigators were able to prove all the elements of offences before submitting the files to the Police Legal Advisor or to the Director of Public Prosecutions; so this definitely will help me in that regard,” Blanhum related moments after being admitted to the bar on Wednesday at the High Court.

L-R: Chief Justice Roxane George, attorney Wendell Blanhum, his mother and Latchie Rahamat (Photo: News Room/October 12, 2022)

Blanhum joined the Guyana Police Force at the age of 18 but it was always his dream to become a lawyer. That dream, he explained, started with his mother who always believed he would make an awesome attorney.

“I am very elated to be admitted to the bar as an attorney to practice law in the courts of Guyana. This was a childhood dream of mine,” an ecstatic Blanhum said.

But it was no easy journey.

In 2018, Blanhum commenced his law studies at the University of Guyana and despite challenges, such as being reassigned from his position as Crime Chief to being the subdivisional officer in Region One, a remote area in Guyana, he has succeeded.

Wendell Blanhum and his wife, attorney Latchie Rahamat (Photo: Guyana Police Force)

He explained that he was determined to complete his law degree and managed to attend classes every chance he got.

“I could recall being posted to Region One –  that was a challenge by itself because you had to complete a certain level of attendance before you can graduate. I was absent from some of the classes but I had some very good lecturers – they excused me for being absent and I had some very good colleagues who assisted me with learning materials and I was able to attend classes whenever I could and I was able to write my exams.

“I was very successful at the LLB level, I graduated with a distinction,” Blanhum said proudly and further added: “I am a gladiator, so to speak, I do not give up. Every crisis I try to look at the opportunity and I always persevere. Being a police officer is not for the faint at heart.”

While studying for his legal education certificate at the Hugh Wooding Law School, Blanhum was faced with another challenge.

Hours before an exam he was duty bound to assess a fire at the Criminal Investigations Department (CID).

“With regards to the fire at the Criminal Investigations Department, I was preparing for my criminal practice and procedure exam and I received a distressing call that there was a fire there. I had to pack up my study notes and visit the scene, make an assessment, report to my senior and then head back to start my examination,” Blanhum explained.

Chief Justice (ag) Roxane George and attorney-at-law Wendell Blanhum (Photo: Guyana Police Force)

He also holds a diploma and degree in public management, a post-graduate diploma in development studies and a master’s in Public Administration.

During his 24-year service in the Police Force Blanhum has been responsible for solving several high-profile cases. In 2015, he became the youngest officer to be appointed as Crime Chief.

Meanwhile, the Chief Justice while accepting his petition, said being an attorney is a tremendous responsibility. Blanhum was told to uphold the ethics of the profession but the Chief Justice said he has already established an excellent foundation being in the Police Force for this new journey.

“We know that you have the training and we know that you have the expertise,” the Chief Justice said.

Blanhum said he will continue to urge “each and every one of my ranks to pursue your academic journey and I want to let each and every one of them know that every journey would not be smooth, you would encounter some road bumps but at the end perseverance is the key, you have to persevere and I am the epitome of perseverance.”

1 Comment
  1. Patricia Pierre says

    My hat goes out to our Crime Chief, Mr Wendell Blanhum. I always knew that you are extraordinary by the way you handled criminology. This dates back to the time when you crscked that case in Kitty when a young lady who had separated from her husband decided to accept an invitation to go out with him on Diwali night. She never returned home to her parents and young son.
    Her body was found buried under the concrete pathway in her exx-husband’s yard. Mr. Blanhumó was able to crack that case and many more cases which seemed difficult to solve. I was disappointed when he was no longer serving as Crime Chief but was transferred to Region 1vinstead. However, I was quite joyful when he was given back that position. Do keep up the good work z,Mr Blanhum as you move on from strength-to-strength

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