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Mar 9, 2011

Homeowner gets raided by Police; she wants an apology

A Belize City woman believed that if she and her husband moved as far as they could from the hot zones in the city, they would be safe from violence. So they moved to the peace and quiet of Belama Phase Four, two and a half months ago. And even though she wasn’t confronted by violence, Ernestine Bess and her husband Dale Bowen were gripped with fear when they heard loud banging on their front door before sunrise.  Ernestine says they were shocked when they realized that officers were ransacking their home.

Ernestine Bess, Police Raided her Home

“I woke up around five o’clock to press, to prepare for school and for my husband to go to work. Then while I was about to press, I heard the bottles that we have by the gate shingling. Then next thing I heard; bang, bang, bang—police. Then when my husband opened the door it was approximately about seven police all with guns. They came in the home and they said that they have a report that we have drugs, ammunition and guns. And then after that they start to search up the house and tumble up the house looking for drugs ammunition and drugs. And at the ending they found nothing. They didn’t even apologize or anything; they just left.”

Jose Sanchez

“Did they have a search warrant?”

Ernestine Bess

“Well they had a white paper, but my husband didn’t read it. They say it was a search warrant.”

Jose Sanchez

“You’re a nurse, you don’t do this kind of thing that they are suspecting?”

Ernestine Bess

Ernestine Bess

“No! I’m a hard working person, I work and study. I don’t have time for drugs and ammunition.”

Jose Sanchez

“Do you think maybe somebody just gave them false information?”

Ernestine Bess

“No I don’t think that. I think it’s because we are new in this area and we have our home, they maybe feel that we doing some illegal thing to get this home.”

Jose Sanchez

“How did you get your home? Through hard work?”

Ernestine Bess

“Yes, we got this home through hard work and by the help of Mister Boots Martinez.”

Jose Sanchez

“You’re saying that they also came to another house in the area?”

Ernestine Bess

“Yes, they went to another house—they went over to that house because we are the latest person living in this area. I just want them to know that they can’t be invading people’s privacy like that and people’s personal space because that is unfair.”

Bess says that she didn’t go to work or school this morning because she had to clean up the house after the raid. No one was inside the next door house that was also raided. But strangely enough, while on the scene our news team spotted at least two men hiding in bushes across from the two homes. Sources in the police department say that the cops were looking for a house owned by a suspected drug dealer.

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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5 Responses for “Homeowner gets raided by Police; she wants an apology”

  1. Disgusted! says:

    Another case of gross abuse of authority, harrassment, unlawful search and outright disrespect against hard working, law-abiding citizens perpetrated by the incompetent, corrupted Belize police department. They find precious time to take advantage of upstanding people based on hearsay and innacurate information, but are unable to bring the real criminals to justice or get conviction when the do.Which is hardly ever. Just another normal day in Belize. Same $%!t, different victim!!!!!! I hope the lady and her husband sue their @$$e$!!!!!

  2. BZNinCALI says:

    Ms. Bess, is it possible that you have someone living in your home who is a criminal?. I don’t believe the police have the time to be jealous or suspicious of you because you moved into a new home. Are your neighbors seeing something you’re not? Keep in mind that most people who get out of the hood try to leave it behind. Suburbanites do not consider calling the police snitching, we call it neighborhood watch. Cuss us, we call the police & have them arrest you for disturbing the peace & using threatening words. If you are completely innocent, you are owed an apology but the behavior I have seen with our folks who should know better has been disappointing to say the least.

    So who were the guys across the street?

  3. MADDYVANDIJK/DEREALIST says:

    If other people informed the police that you have drugs and ammunition in your home, the police have all rights to do a search on your property. They came with a search warrant; perhaps it would have been in your best interest to read the white paper, to make sure it was indeed a search warrant.

    Ernestine Bess, I am proud of you as a working woman who is doing her best. It does not give you a good feeling when police comes to your home in this situation, it is shameful, and most often people tend to feel violated. Don’t expect an apology from them, they obviously felt they did their job and that was enough.
    Goodluck..

  4. MyLegacyB4myPeople says:

    This is a good thing that the police have done but unfortunately to the wrong people, it seems like they know how to approach the wrong people with their warrants either out of fear of approaching those who are truly involved in criminal activities and also to make it appear to the public that they are trying to control the activities, I say go after the real criminals it’s not like you don’t know who they are. Remember My Legacy B 4 My People.

  5. awrk says:

    police think they are above the law. Warrants are valid between 6 am and 6 pm

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