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Belize: A policeman accused of raping a detained woman has been denied bail

Trigger warning: This article contains sensitive information. Details include sexual assault of a woman. This information has the potential to be distressing and trigger negative feelings or memories.

Belize Police Commissioner Chester Williams has opposed the release on bail of a police officer accused of raping a woman detained at a police station last Friday.

“Yes, I opposed bail because we believe the police officer should remain in jail pending the outcome of his case,” Williams told reporters after the officer appeared in court Monday.

According to reports, the 45-year-old policeman offered to release the woman without charges in exchange for sex. Reports indicate that he took the woman out of her cell and escorted her to another area of ​​the police station, where he allegedly had intercourse with her.

The Belize Police Department (BPD) said a criminal and internal investigation was ongoing, and the police commissioner condemned Marin’s actions.

“An ongoing internal investigation is underway to determine whether there was a dereliction of supervision or dereliction of duty that may have allowed this egregious act to be committed. “BPD is committed to transparency and accountability, ensuring that justice is served and the public trust is maintained,” police said in a statement.

Williams, who is also a lawyer, appeared in lower courts during Marin’s arraignment, where he opposed bail.

He later told reporters that his appearance in court on a rather mundane, simple charge was intended to show the gravity of the case.

“As I said earlier, we are committed to getting rid of these rogue officers who continually do things that embarrass the department. My presence here is a strong confirmation that we are doing everything we can to ensure that those harmed by police actions receive justice.

“The person who is the victim was a prisoner in police custody. An investigation revealed that a police officer solicited her for sex in exchange for her release. He then took her outside the cell block where the act took place. We have secured several statements as well as video evidence to support her allegations,” Williams added.

Williams said the police officer in question must have been aware there were cameras on the block, adding that “every police officer who works in that area knows there are cameras there.”

The police commissioner said that while “the camera would not have captured the act itself, “it was recorded as he took her out of her cell and took her to the area where the alleged rape took place.”

Williams said the police officer was “just a block guard and his only duty was to make sure the inmates were OK.

“If they needed water or anything like that, he provided them, but when it came to dealing with female prisoners, if any female prisoner had to be taken out of her cell, it shouldn’t have been his responsibility. A policewoman should do it.

“So his action in removing her from the block was inappropriate and, more importantly, he said she told him she wanted a cigarette. He even went to get a cigarette for her and according to him she was taken from the cell block to smoke a cigarette, which again is completely wrong.

“So we have seen a number of breakdowns in our domestic policy, which we will address in a similar way. There was another inmate in the prison block and yes, she saw what happened and indeed had some concerns, and when the shift changed and other officers arrived, she was the first to report to the police, he added.