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Jun 25, 2012

Cops clean up streets during Police Week

The Community Policing Unit has embarked on a project that entails the Broken Windows Theory which is a concept in which the upkeep of the environments may stop vandalism and crime. This morning, police took on neighborhoods in the city where violence-prone areas have been targeted for rehabilitation. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports from Euphrates Avenue.


Isani Cayetano, Reporting

The rehabilitation of select public spaces, including this basketball court on Euphrates Avenue, is part of an initiative spearheaded by the Community Policing Unit. Graf-covered uprights enclosing the perimeter display the names of those who’ve played or loitered here.  The unsolicited artwork is not only an eyesore but also an open invitation, according to Sergeant Elroy Carcamo, for vandals to deface property.


Elroy Carcamo

Sgt. Elroy Carcamo, O.C., Community Policing Unit, Eastern Division

“If you notice there are several areas in which we have graffiti within the area and if you know about the Broken Windows Theory, if you leave these things in this area it will cause the crime rate and so forth to escalate in this area because you are telling the people that it’s alright to do certain things.  So what the police have done [is that] we have come together and try to see how we can assist in different areas along with the community to beautify the areas and to have the community appreciate what they have with them.”


Together with a team of dedicated officers Carcamo whitewashes the writings on the wall.  The location, a breeding ground for promising talent, has been the scene of several shooting incidents over the years. Today; however, the idea is to cleanse the playground of its negative image.


Ryan Timmons

Cpl. Ryan Timmons, Volunteer

“The Police Department, through this initiative, is trying to fix the broken windows in our community.  There are a lot of areas that are for the community, for the kids and at the end of the day the deplorable state that they are in, it takes a village to raise a child and everybody has their part to do and we are doing our part and that is what it means to us doing our part.”


The Broken Window Theory is a criminological concept in which vandalism; crime and anti-social behavior become the norm in society.  By supervising and maintaining urban environments through the Community Upliftment Project the department believes that it can prevent an increase in criminal activity within these neighborhoods.


Sgt. Elroy Carcamo

“This morning we were in Pinks Alley where we tried to clean off some of the graffiti and we worked with the city council to get the road scraped and kind of uplift the road. This helps the Police Department a lot.  It takes us a long way with the department and the community itself.  Most of the time they would say the police officers are just here to arrest and things like that police officers are here to work along with the community to have or to make a safer Belize, alright.  We are looking at the quality of life and these kinds of issues.  If we do not deal with the petty things then it will escalate and we will have a lot of problems so we need to start from here in the playgrounds where our youths are and so forth.”


For Corporal Timmons sprucing up the playground is a labor of love.  His fulfillment comes from recognizing that he is a part of the conscious effort that is needed to reshape the image of the Belize Police Department in the eyes of the public.


Cpl. Ryan Timmons

“My satisfaction is knowing that we are moving from that image of brute force and ignorance to brute force and intelligence, right, showing that we are working with the community.  For us to solve the crime situation we cannot do it on our own, we have to be partners with the community, work with the community and do our part, right.  So my gratification is knowing that in some way we are impacting the community and people who we are tasked to serve.”


The initiative is part of the annual celebration of Police Week, a seven-day observation of the critical role that law enforcement officers play in maintaining order within our society.  Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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2 Responses for “Cops clean up streets during Police Week”

  1. Storm says:

    Why not have chain gangs and force the convicts to serve the public by cleaning up, under the close watch of armed BDF guards? It would be good exercise and penance for them.

  2. Really says:

    we want the POLICE to enforce the laws, not do City Council work, stop playing games.
    A week ago top brass Police, Minister, Compol, every body singing that quality of life laws will be enforced. No more public drinking, no loitering, no riding bycycles up stop. well this Sunday on my way to Church a whole bunch a drunken lawless men in front of Brads at Farmers market, harassing women, urinating on the street side, what quality of life!! this is what they need to fix not sweeping a basketball court. lets be real!!!

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