Students, teacher robbed
By ALEXANDER BRUZUAL Friday, February 8 2013
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VICTIMS: Deputy Dean of the Medical Faculty at UWI Dr Ian Sammy leads several students out of the St Joseph Police Station yesterday after they gave s...
BANDITS yesterday raided the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex in Mt Hope, entering a seminar room where a lecture was in session and robbed several students and the lecturer.
Police reported at about 9.30 am, two men of African descent walked into Seminar Room Ten and loudly announced a hold-up. The men threatened the group of ten students and the lecturer with physical violence. They ordered the students and teacher to lie on the floor.
The bandits then relieved the students and the teacher of the personal items including money, jewelry, cellular phones, laptop computers, wallets and iPads.
The criminals then left the seminar room and escaped by running through nearby bushes in the vicinity of the Ministry of Food Production compound. Security personnel were immediately notified and a search for the two criminals was initiated.
The St Joseph Police were then notified and a party of officers including Sgt Vetus Hernandez, Sgt Garcia, PC Chadee, PC Alexander, PC Ramdeen and PC Sawyer visited the scene. The officers conducted enquiries and assured that arrests are imminent.
Up to late yesterday, several of the students were giving statements at the St Joseph Police Station. The students later declined to be interviewed by Newsday.
Chairman of the North Central Regional Health Authority (NCRHA) Dr Shehenaz Mohammed said she was disheartened by the incident and said security at the complex has been beefed up as a result.
I was informed early this morning by the head of security at the complex of what had taken place and I am indeed saddened by the news. It is quite unfortunate and it is more disheartening to know that this has happened to a group of young professionals in the pursuit of their careers. Since then, I have been informed that security has been beefed up at the complex, Mohammed said.
When asked if further measures will be taken to ensure student security, such as having all persons who have access to those quarters of the complex display university identification badges, Mohammed said this was unlikely.
The difficulty with proposals such as this lies in the structural layout of the compound. The learning areas of the complex are merged with areas that the public has access to, as at the end of it all, the complex is also, among other things, a hospital. Therefore, while at key points we have security, and we do check for identification, there are other points where the public has access to, and this makes things problematic. So this is where our difficulty is compounded. However, we have increased security at the complex, and patrols will be made even more regularly, to ensure that situations like this do not happen again, Mohammed said.