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Jan 7, 2019

Garry Yearwood is Remanded for Aggravated Assault, Fitzroy’s Says It’s Internal Beef within the Police Department

Garry Yearwood

One of the Yearwood siblings is behind bars tonight even though he claims he was the victim of an assault. Garry Yearwood, who is a union leader, is also the brother of Fitzroy Yearwood, the well-known cop who had his own share of problems with the department.  In recent days, Garry claims that his ex and her family followed him to his house in Los Lagos where they assaulted him.  But the tables turned and he is facing charges of aggravated assault.  Here is News Five’s Isani Cayetano with a report.


Isani Cayetano, Reporting

President of the Belize Communications Workers Union, Garry Yearwood, is on remand at the Hattieville prison after being arraigned on Friday for allegedly committing an offense against his ex-common-law wife on January first.  The incident in which Yearwood was admittedly assaulted by his former live-in girlfriend is said to have involved the brandishing of a licensed firearm, as well as threats being made against the woman.  It’s a claim that the B.T.L. employee’s sibling, well-known police officer Fitzroy Yearwood, says is utterly false.


Insp. Fitzroy Yearwood, Brother of Garry Yearwood

“My brother called me on New Year’s Day, I was in the company of my new wife and I answered him and he told me, he said, “I called 911 but they are not answering.”  He said, “My baby mother Ms. Royann Riverol is at my house.  She recently assaulted me by hitting me in the back of my head.”  He said, “Please call the police for me.”


According to the elder brother, he proceeded to dial the emergency number only for the call to be picked up by a dispatcher in Belize City, who subsequently provided him with a contact for the Ladyville Police Station.  That officer, he says, took down the complaint.


Fitzroy Yearwood

Insp. Fitzroy Yearwood

“I told her what he relayed to me, that he was at home, his baby mother, in the company of her mother and her brothers, elements from Supal Street, arrived at his home and they assaulted him.  He was hit in the back of the head and he is saying that he knows that because baby mother knows that he has a licensed firearm he doesn’t want her to make a false report against him.  So he called for the police, they didn’t answer, and I called them.”


Despite having placed the call, Yearwood turned around and drove to his brother’s house in Los Lagos to check on him.


Insp. Fitzroy Yearwood

“When I arrived there he explained to me that they left.  I told him, “Bro, go to the station and make a report.”  He said, “I will.”  But he was shaken up.  To my surprise he called me on Thursday and he told me that he was called by Ladyville Police, he gave me the WPC’s name, her name is on the charge sheet.  I won’t mention it because I intend to sue the department for unlawful detention and unlawful imprisonment, but he said that she called him and told him to come to the station to give a report.  In all actual fact, I believe my brother should have made his report because he was assaulted on his private property.”


The B.T.L. employee would eventually turn up to give a statement but when he did, he was taken into custody, reportedly on the instructions of a high ranking officer whom Yearwood alleges has a personal gripe with him.


Royann Riverol

Insp. Fitzroy Yearwood

“My brother went to the station and when he got there to give his statement, as they asked him to come in and do, he was grabbed by Sergeant Leon Hewlett, who told him that he had been instructed by the higher ups to arrest and charge him.  My brother called, complied, I went there, I received his personal properties and I told him, if they are charging you, let them charge you.  I know you have no case to answer to, but let them waste their time.”


But it seemed as though there was indeed a charge to be levied upon the unionist.


Chester Williams

Chester Williams, Acting Commissioner of Police

“I know Garry Yearwood well and based on what I am told, it was a matter between him and the girl and I don’t think there was any other witness or witnesses who could have refuted either story and so the officer said that he decided that since it is at that stage, it is best that it goes to the court and let the court decide who the court is going to believe.” 


As a result, Yearwood was charged with aggravated assault and since it involves a firearm, he was remanded until March seventh.  His brother, a career policeman, strongly believes that the arrest and arraignment stems from a vendetta against him.


Garry Yearwood

Insp. Fitzroy Yearwood

“I’m okay.  I am Fitzroy Yearwood and I have been through enough, but I do not believe that my brother should suffer at the extent because he’s related to me.  If you want to jail me, jail me, but don’t jail someone that is innocent.  I have heard the sentiments of other members of the choir.  I can live with that.  I am not even emotional over all of this, I explained to my brother on Friday morning, more than likely you will be remanded; just take this one for the team, Team Yearwood.”


Chester Williams

“As a department, we really and truly need to look at incidents of these nature more seriously and try to act in a way that is reasonable to be able to try and have these matters resolved through the courts.  I don’t personally; I don’t see an issue in respect to the matter where Garry Yearwood is concerned.”


Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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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