Teacher Jozette Bibby-Bowen. (IWN file photo)

The St. Vincent and the Grenadines Teachers’ Union (SVGTU) has expressed “serious concern” about the manner in which teacher Jozette Bibby-Bowen was treated by law enforcement authorities when she was arrested on Monday.

Bibby-Bowen, a teacher at Bishop’s College Kingstown, pleaded not guilty to two charges of obscene publication when she appeared before a magistrate in Kingstown on Tuesday.

The prosecution suggested that station bail, which was granted on Monday, be continued and the Magistrate set March 17 for the next court appearance.

The charges stem from two posts that Bibby-Bowen allegedly made on the social networking website Facebook on Feb. 17, 2015.

Teacher Jozette Bibby-Bowens speak with persons after her court appearance on Tuesday. (IWN photo)
Teacher Jozette Bibby-Bowen speak with persons after her court appearance on Tuesday. (IWN photo)

“The alleged use of the Major Crime Unit, for whatever reason, might be analogous to the proverbial sledgehammer to kill an ant,” Wendy Bynoe, public relations officer of the union said.

The Major Crime Unit, which conducted the investigation that led to the charges being brought against Bibby-Bowen, is more commonly associated with homicide investigations.

“While the union recognises free expression and does not condone the violation of the laws of St Vincent and the Grenadines in any form, the reported grounds for and manner in which the member was brought before the law are cause for grave concern,” Bynoe said in the statement.

“The SVGTU stands resolute in support of the member since the law presumes innocent until proven guilty. In the meantime, we continue to support members’ right to continue to share their views on national issues,” Bynoe said.

She noted that object 2.17 of the SVGTU’s Constitution states, “The object of the Union shall be to seek to exert the influence of teachers on all matters of national importance”.

5 replies on “Union expresses ‘serious concern’ as teacher is charged with ‘obscene writing’”

  1. Look what Vincy have come to. Just now they might arrest Vincentians for farting in public. Time for these fellas to go, they have the police wasting good valuable time monitoring Facebook instead of doing their jobs.

  2. […] at least this girl has never been accused of rape.

    Gonsalves’ press secretary should have been arrested at his place of work, right there in the prime minister’s office, when he said publicly on radio he had thoughts of shooting someone. That’s a million times worse than what is alleged this lady wrote.

    Arresting her at work is part of her punishment. The police could simply have asked her to come down to the police station. Or she could have been picked up after or before work. There was absolutely no need whatsoever to make a spectacle of her at her place of work.
    This is clearly the political police acting in a fashion as demanded by their political masters. It smells like the Vynnette Frederick arrest at the restaurant.

    It will be interesting to know what part the DPP and Minister of Arrest had to do with the procedure, of this particular arrest.

    They are all out of control from the head down to the beating specialists in the interrogation rooms.

  3. C. ben-David says:

    Blane, we deserve what we vote for — who gets the most seats — in a parliamentary democracy. Ralph had the most seats.

    Ralph looks in the mirror and sees us; we look in the mirror and see him. Same difference.

    Freedom of speech and conscience: how many votes does that get?

  4. In an election year the police is making sure that the populace become disenchanted with the ULP government.. A few weeks ago was the mini-bus drivers now it’s the teachers. History has clearly shown that when teachers (enmasse) become fed up with the regime that they lost the general elections. The DPP needs to look beyond these simple issues. There are more important matters to attend to that demand more attention. Someone in police force is clearly intent on having the UlP out of office. I suggest that the police use the same energies to curtail crimes and solve the cases in their cold files.

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