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Jun 6, 2012

U.S. donates police vehicles with cameras and crime scene equipment

The violent crime statistics has placed Belize among the five most violent countries globally. The US government today stepped in with a major donation that will hopefully assist to improve those statistics. Through a regional security initiative, CARSI, the US handed over today a fleet of vehicles, loaded with state of art security equipment to help law enforcers in the detection and apprehension of criminals. News Five’s Jose Sanchez was present for the handing-over at the Roger’s Stadium in Belize City.


Jose Sanchez, Reporting

The Central American Regional Security Initiative is assisting the Belize Police department with its crime solving efforts. US Ambassador Vinai Thummalapally outlined how the equipment has now made it a technological war on crime.


Vinai Thummalapally

Vinai Thummalapally, U.S Ambassador to Belize

“Over the past year, I’m excited to announce that the U.S. Embassy and Government of Belize have signed for almost six million U.S. dollars in CARSI funds. These funds are designated for citizens security initiatives in Belize including among others; law enforcement capacity building, border initiatives and crime prevention efforts. Towards this end, we are donating approximately one million U.S. dollars worth of equipment today; including seventeen vehicles. We are also providing training and assistance to law enforcement personnel, grants for at risk youth programs and infrastructure and technology upgrades. Let me highlight just a few of the key things we are doing under the CARSI program. With the new scenes of crime forensic vehicles, the police will have a far better ability to gather and use forensic evidence to process crime scenes and use the evidence collected to help catch and convict criminals.”


The new Scenes of Crime van has been outfitted with equipment giving it a value of ninety thousand dollars.  It comes equipped with cameras, road lights, metal detectors, and a restoration kit for vehicle VIN numbers and a generator to keep scenes well lit.


Lloyd Roches, Head, Scenes of Crime

“The equipment varies from cameras to evidence hardcore lifting kits to the aphids tracker system.”


Jose Sanchez

“What does that do; how does that help you with your work?”


Lloyd Roches

Lloyd Roches

“The aphids tracker system is used for when we go to scenes especially burglary scenes where we lift up any finger prints. When we return to the office, we download it into the system and if there is any match in there, the aphid’s tracker system will automatically say this finger print matches this person. We cannot say that this person committed the crime, but this person was at the crime scene.”


Jose Sanchez

“And this has been used before in the court. I think I’ve seen at least a couple convictions with it.”


Lloyd Roches

“Yes, it has been used before—in the last years or so. Last year we had thirty-eight finger print matches when we are using Aphid’s system.”


Vinai Thummalapally

“With ten new vehicles for increased mobile patrols for South Side Belize City, police will be able to respond more quickly. And coupled with increased training and computerized equipment, they will strengthen their investigative procedures from beginning to end. With U.S. government assistance, Belize is developing a canine detection capability. Canines have been provided to find drugs, explosives and much more.”


According to Assistant Commissioner of Police Elodio Aragon junior, the police department structure once divided Belize City into six zones, population growth and technology has seen the need for eleven zones.


Elodio Aragon Jr., Assistant Commissioner of Police

Elodio Aragon Jr.

“In all, the city has now eleven zones, police zones. With the donation of these vehicles based on a proposal, we have looked at putting each one of these vehicles in each zone. So we will have eleven police zones with one vehicle each in each zone. Certain zones that we consider hot spot areas, etc where there is an increase in crime, etc., those zones will be complimented with additional resources that we presently have. So, [it is] to ensure that we are able to respond to calls from 911 quickly and to ensure that we have high visibility of police within these areas.”


In those areas, the vehicles will be using audio visual feeds that will be monitored by the police department.


Santiago Ciau Jr., Police Constable

“Each of these vehicles that we have are equipped with a video camera. Previously we had ten which were already active. The camera records outside, inside and audio of whatever is going on at the time; it records all of the information. It also gives the location at the time of the recording—where the vehicle is—with a GPS setting and monitors the speed and mileage that the vehicle is going at the time.”


Jose Sanchez

“Why is it important to have a visual of what the officers are doing or what they are saying?”


Santiago Ciau Jr.

Santiago Ciau Jr.

“Well it comes in handy if there is any allegation against the police officers if they did anything on that time. We can go back and review the camera and check to see if it did happen. Other than that also it shows what the police officers are doing at the time of the patrol. So it gives them the ability to defend themselves and protect the citizens.”


Jose Sanchez

“Where does this information go? Is it going through the internet? Where is it monitored? Is it something that is viewed at the end of the day?”


Santiago Ciau Jr.

“It is viewed every morning at eight o’clock; the footage is downloaded and viewed. It is reviewed by me. There was one incident with a mobile where it crashed into a bus and the bus driver came out and said that it was the mobile’s fault. When reviewing the camera, it showed that the bus was parked and that the mobile; that the bus came into contact with the mobile. The bus owner then said that it would make the insurance deal with it because it was his fault.”


Jose Sanchez

“So how many vehicles are with this system?”


Santiago Ciau Jr.

“Well currently we have ten that are already out and all the other vehicles that are here came equipped with it already.”


Reporting for News Five, Jose Sanchez.


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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23 Responses for “U.S. donates police vehicles with cameras and crime scene equipment”

  1. Storm says:

    These police vehicles are state of the art, as good as any police department has, anywhere in the world.


    I refuse to believe that our people are inherently less honest or more stupid than police elsewhere, we just must get thorough training for them. IT IS THE JOB OF OUR LEADERS, STARTING WITH HON. JOHN SALDIVAR, TO ACCOMPLISH THAT. Otherwise, it is all just a game for show.

  2. Rod says:

    Look how they put balloons on the vehicles like if they are giving us a birthday present the us and this ambassador has done nothing for Belize and they are the one causing all this crime in Belize because of their insatiable appetite for drugs so this is no birthday party people are dying all over the place and you want to put balloons on a couple of vehicles this ya pm and gov need to go out guan barrow guan step down you are useless as a pm a total failure at your job .

  3. Earl Grey says:

    Do they get the PROPER TRAINING TOO??????????????

  4. mick says:

    It is incumbent on the police leadership to ensure that proper training is afforded to the ones who will be using the equipment donated. Police has been well noted for their inability to maintain equipment and use them properly and this is partly because there is little or no accountability. They must note that they will get these gifts for a while and when the donors figure out the longevity of the equipment and why so short, the donor pool will dry up like Belize swamps in the summer!

  5. Common Sense says:

    It is a gift Rod…..a reason for the police force to be celebrating……new flashy rides, real “chick magnets” :-)

    Dont forget the sniffer dogs gifted as well (how long before the expensive trained dogs are turned to potlicker?)- nice little side money in selling puppies soon to come!

  6. AnnonBzean says:

    Rod seriously, are you just dumb??? Honestly man, you need to shut up, cause your post has no tangible value 99.99% of the time. It’s like you complain about everything, now it’s the balloons. Seriously??

  7. Islander says:

    The cameras are useless if the video feed will be edited and not shown raw from beggining to the end !

    Edited videos not only cut out crucial information but also shows guilt on the part of the person or organization doing the editing .

  8. shabba says:

    17 vehicles and equipment for 1.1 million. The deputy prime minister’s one new vehicle is a quarter of that.

  9. belizean living abroad says:

    Rod it doesn’t matter if its good news or bad news you always have something negative to say and always blaming the government or the prime minister, now you’re blaming the U.S. for all the crime in Belize, smh.

  10. O. Walk observer says:

    All of these equipment won’t last long, knowing from experience at how police take care their tools. Nothing that gov. does to curb the crime and violence situation works, no matter how many boots are put on the ground. Even the draconian laws that have been implemented is having any effect; the only effect that it is having is a negative one, that is harrasing the law abiding citizens of Belize.
    Look at the gun and ammo laws; not vehicle with dark tint etc. and how about the vehicle check points being done during rush hour. Belize has so many check points that it is worse than a totalitarian state and yet this has had no, repeat absolutely positive effect. Once the root cause is not addressed, no reactive measure shall work. See for yourself at the stats.

  11. roska says:

    good….. let us just keep in mind that uncle sam will now be watching every single move the police do with those vehicles….. their obsession with the “Big Brother” mentality has them spying on everyone….

    GOB…. be careful when loading that software into your data base…. you will be opening up all your information to uncle Sam… they are the experts in those fields….dont forget the US made Flame virus…. and keep in mind that they are mostly (and almost exclusively) worried about the safety of THEIR citizens…. not of the common belizean…..

    And let us also keep in mind what has been the outcome of uncle Sam’s interference on countries like El Salvador, Guatemala, Somalia, Vietnam, Iraq,…….. and the list goes on and on!!!

  12. deedee says:

    Of all the equipments & other gadgets that has been given to the BPD the only thing that caught Rod’s attention was BALLOONS lol of all things…smh. Really shows how far your mental capacity goes & in this case it goes as far as the BALLOONS. I hope that with the proper training of officers these equipments & help from the police dog it will assist them greatly in fighting & solving everyday crime.

  13. rod says:

    annonbzean , you are a total idiot you see whats happening in this country and you still try to defend this no good pm and gov. you tha whey they call tough head in a school its people like you why this country is going to the dogs you see and yet you wont believe well i hope you and judas barrow will have a nice life together in miami soon.

  14. Tanya says:

    I wholeheartedly believe that there are good elements in the police department but we need to increase the bar of education and get good training for them. Many of them cannot even speak adequate english or communicate with education to the citizens. As per the US embassy, its a good start and we will see if it works and helps. The only question si what happened to the rest of the country. ITS NOT THE COUNTRY OF BELIZE CITY.. Belize also includes orange walk, corozal, san igancio, toledo, dangriga, caye caulker and san pedro.. No wonder the rest of the country voted PUP instead of UDP. You always forget the rest of the country. I know belize city is crime filled and they should have the most of them but at least one for each town would look nice on PR for the police department, GOB and US embassy..

  15. sim says:

    I hope that these vehicle are use for the fighting of crime and not given to high ranking officer to drive from home to work and park at their home at night, when they can be on the street paroling helping to catch criminals and fighting crime.

  16. sim says:

    Elodio Aragon Jr. what the hell are you talking about 12 hrs shift are you out of you mind i want to put you out on the street paroling for 12 hrs and then you come back and tell me if you can do it for a week . you look like you cant even do a 5 hrs patrol shift. come on let be fair and logical.

  17. L.C. says:

    @deedee: You kinda learn to ignore Rod and Storm for the most part. Stick around and you’ll learn that they are always the first two to “HANG ALL MURDERERS” and GOV’T IS CROOKED and anything anyone does is the government’s fault.

    Good for the police in getting new equipment. Let’s hope they make it last.

  18. bmp chic says:

    rod rod rod what is up with u ? r u laughing at yourself yet ?

  19. A Jew says:

    The US is the biggest market for Drugs yet they label Belize as the drug hub of Caribbean/Central America which is true. If they focus to lock up and convict their own drug addicts in their own country no one this side would be doing the impossible of transporting it to the US.
    Its a very kind donation, now the police will have to practise “Good Maintenance Management” which they are not good at. If you dont believe me look at all their broken up vehicles, and other vehicle assets they own. The only thing they would not break is tanks.

  20. Royal Creole says:

    my peoples wah sell they camera ina less than six months. guaranteed that on fridays and saturday nights when the majority are drinking and hussling the cameras will be off.

  21. Sasha says:

    LOL @ Rod Ballon. Roska why are you worried that the US will download information from these equipment, are some police on your payroll or someone you know on it and this way they will be caught redhanded. I am happy the BZ police received these vehicles, this way I know my US TAX $$$ didn’t go to waste, I am contributing to the safety of this nation in some way, God Bless.

  22. bad2Dbone says:

    tax $$$ sut up i bet u live off food stamps @ u knw who u r…rod has a big point of view thats dat gehtto mentality no one gonna b able to !@#$ with that type of mind…us is trynna control everything..nd they are good at it dog breeding money i seen dat..12 hour shift..who da !@#$ is he trynna fool??fello belizeans think they open minded but still aint nd then try make rod b the dumb@$$ wen they cant see what is really going on new cars more ….. for cops who cant even talk the english being taght in school dammn :( ..!@#$ it,we are at the bottom of the pyramid along with many billions of other people..that aint changing until the end of our planet…hahahaha.puff puff.this weed is good :)

  23. Reverend Parsons says:

    do you want to give up control of your Country? Keep accepting gifts from the U.S.. We already have a president that cant run the U.S. and our government has no problem digging our fingers into other governments for money and once they have their fingers dug in they will tear your country like a fat man eating BBQ. The U.S. wants your Gov. to change it’s banking laws and all those little gifts are going to be used as leverage to get your country to change things the way the U.S. wants them. DON’T LET IT HAPPEN! I am a U.S. citizen that has watched our country really screw up other countries and I love Belize. It would be a tragedy to see Belize become more like the USA because your poor will get poorer and your corrupt Gov. will get filthy rich, although I do think you should change your gun laws.

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