Friday 15 November, 2019

Police commissioner intervenes in stunt Benz probe

Major General Antony Anderson

Major General Antony Anderson

The Commissioner of Police, Major General Antony Anderson, has taken an interest in the incident involving the Mercedes Benz in which a driver was recently captured on video doing dangerous stunts at a busy intersection in the Corporate Area.

Following days of media attention on the matter, including a much-publicised ‘teaching moment’ meeting involving the reported offending driver, it was anticipated that the incident had been laid to rest.

But with a fresh development in the form of a more revealing video of the incident, and public indications that the ‘teaching moment’ may not have been gone over anywhere near as well as it was intended, the top cop has intervened in the saga that has become somewhat of a public relations nightmare for the police force.

There has been wide-scale public condemnation of the handling of the matter by the authorities.

“Based on information that has emerged from the investigations into the matter, I have instructed that this matter be pursued further. We will continue to keep the public informed,” a release from the police commissioner stated on Wednesday.

The release came hours after the new video emerged on social media showing that the person who was actually driving the Benz during the incident that took place at the intersection of Dunrobin and Dukaran avenues in St Andrew last Sunday, may not have been the individual who came and apologised to the country and head of the Public Safety and Traffic Enforcement Branch (PSTEB), Assistant Commissioner of Police, Bishop Dr Gary Welsh, on Tuesday.

 

A view of a 12-second video clip from a different angle than the first 21-second clip shows that after performing the stunts at the intersection, the Mercedes Benz was stopped a few meters from where the road traffic infringements were committed, and two individuals are seen at the front of the vehicle.

While it is not clear from the latest video footage who was driving the vehicle, or if any other individual(s) was/were in the back seat of the car, it appears that the person who apologised for the offence, who is of a very light complexion, was not the driver of the vehicle at the time of the incident.

Dennis Dietrih in the meeting with ACP Welsh.

Also, the second video has an individual closely resembling West Indies cricketer, Andre Russell, gleefully sitting in the front passenger seat of the car when it was stopped after the stunting.

Notably, Dennis Dietrih, the individual who apologised for the offence on Tuesday, identified himself as the personal assistant to Russell, and there were early indications that Russell was believed to be the owner of the vehicle.

Also, when the car was stopped near the intersection, one of the persons inside the car is heard asking if individuals who were standing on the side of the road had caught the incident on camera.

Reacting to the development, social media users have since raised questions about whether the person who met with the police took blame for the incident as a cover for another individual or individuals who was/were in the vehicle.

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