Police chief says prisoners escape could have been prevented

Police chief says prisoners escape could have been prevented
Vernon Francois.
Vernon Francois.

The escape of two inmates from the Richfond Police Station last weekend has raised many questions on the security measures at the lock-ups and about police vigilance.

In addressing this issue, Police Commissioner Vernon Francois told the media yesterday that if there were additional security, it would have prevented the escape.

“So really this is just human error. In some other cases we have to look at the configuration of police stations,” François explained.

The police chief told media operatives that the lock-ups here are safe, especially since hundreds of prisoners are kept for a long time and have never escaped before.

However, François said that he too is equally troubled by the recent escape.

“Whenever we have a breach in security at our police station it is an area of concern for us, but it is something we are looking at, to see what went wrong or what caused it to happen,” he stated.

According to him, there is always a possibility that a prisoner may escape. “There have more sophisticated facilities where it has happened, “he added.

However, he promised to review the security procedures at that particular police station and possibly others.

“We will find a way and means of preventing it from happening,” he said.

François also used the opportunity to urge police officials across the island to remain on high alert and be more vigilant.

The two inmates escaped the Richfond Police Station lock-up in Dennery on Saturday, September 27 by breaking open a cell door.

They were discovered missing at around 11:30 a.m. that same day. They were were among five prisoners on remand at the station when the breakout occurred.

At the time of the escape, they were both on commitment warrants and were to be transferred to the Bordelais Correctional Facility.

One of them was recently remanded for possession of two rounds of ammunition and is a suspect in a recent shooting incident. The other man was remanded for breaking into a house.

The police was successful in recapturing one of the escapees on Sunday, Sept. 28 in La Caye, Dennery. The other suspect is still at large.

The police press office revealed that the suspect on the run had given the police a wrong name, and had previous convictions.


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  1. I can understand where the Police Commissioner is coming from. Yes, prisoners shouldn't be able to escape from a holding cell, jail, or a prison, but yes, shit happens. It happens in the England, the US, Russia, Israel, etc and other places, so why can't it happen in St. Lucia, where our holding cells aren't even as sophisticated as the other places I mentioned?

    WAM THERE mentioned prison officials get fired when a prisoner escapes. That's correct ONLY when gross negligence is found. The two murderers escaped from a Chicago high-rise holding cell, using bed sheets, no one was fired, the 3 people escape from a prison in OK, i think, no one was fired. People are out for too much blood when things happen.


  2. I need to understand. If the prisoner had previous convictions then he must have a criminal record file with picture and fingerprints.

    On his recent arrest he fooled the police with a fake name. So the police never checked his picture and fingerprints with a filing system? Is that how it is done here.
    The picture we are seeing of him seems to be a personal one of him the police got somewhere. How old is it? So where is his recent police photo taken since his arrest


  3. Insultive statement i must add. That is a response one can expect from student (not tertiary). To expect that from a Commissioner is ludicrus. This is what passes for accountability in our country every day and we are surprised when bandits plunder the country. In any other country Francois would have gotten himself fired not for being somewhat unaccountable but for issuing such RETARD statements. Such as it happens other places. What nonsense!!! I'll tell you what happens in other countries too, you get fired for incompetence and repremanded for making such foolish statements. But that does not happen here. Is the PM listening to this????


    • The PM eh listening cus he just as bad. He too needs to learn what happens to incompetence in other parts of the world too. They always quick to compare to other parts of the world in trying to throw blame off of themselves but never to say how they should be dealt with.


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