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Alex “Kubiyashi” Barnwell was escorted to police headquarters “to answer questions” about the discussion. (Photo: Facebook)
Alex “Kubiyashi” Barnwell was escorted to police headquarters “to answer questions” about the discussion. (Photo: Facebook)

Commissioner of Police Michael Charles is investigating an incident in which an announcer at Hot97.1 FM was taken into police custody Wednesday morning, reportedly over a discussion on air about two students having sex.

The police chief told I-Witness News on Thursday that he would like to defer comment until after his investigation, but said he was informed of the incident on Wednesday.

The station said in its newscast Thursday morning that the announcer, Alex “Kubiyashi” Barnwell, was escorted to police headquarters “to answer questions” about the discussion.

“Three members of the Police force, in addition to an escort truck with officers came to carry me in for questioning on things that I allegedly said (things that I never said),” Kubiyashi said in a Facebook post on Thursday.

The on-air discussion was about a video said to have surfaced on social media some weeks ago showing a 17-year-old male student and a 13-year-old girl, also a student, having sex.

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Reports are that while the sex act appears to be consensual, statutory rape charges have been brought against the male student, since, according to the laws of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, a 13-year-old cannot legally consent to sex.

The male student is also said to have been suspended from classes, pending the outcome of legal proceedings.

“The police were unable to present any evidence of wrongdoing and seems to be acting on hearsay, with the morning host being released after a brief conversation with the Assistant Commissioner of Police,” Hot 97 said in its newscast Thursday morning.

Barnwell recently began co-hosting the station’s morning programme with Chris “Too Cool Chris” Jones.

“We are trying to find out, we are trying to shed light on something that is going on and also we are trying to guide and give advise, because nobody wants to be under that kind of pressure where they can’t walk the street and they have to be under shame. My argument yesterday was that both of these kids have a future ahead of them and we just can’t shortcut their future because of a mistake they made in the ignorance of their youth,” Kubiyashi said on the programme Thursday morning.

“Now, that’s exactly what I was trying to push yesterday and that was the argument. And I am encouraging the families still, even though something real snide and nasty went on, where people came for me yesterday, yo’ need to love up them kids, and yo’ need to hug them up and yo’ need to show them right from wrong and continue teaching them and continue parenting them,” he said.

“… That’s what the conversation was about. How on God’s green earth does that warrant officer to leave to come down here to carry me in for questioning, because I allegedly said something and when I am to reach by CID for questioning, the nature of the conversation to me was based on complete hearsay and allegations? Nobody actually listened to what I said on the radio station,” he said.

“Ah go keep calm, but where are we living? Is this a police state? Is this a police state? And are the actions of the people yesterday a true reflection of the whole Police Force? … Or are these the actions of individuals? … And who is making these ad hoc decisions just so?” he said.

Barnwell said he was “arbitrarily brought in to sit down [to] basically what started as a kind of lambastment (sic) that I am being irresponsible — come on!

“Anybody could actually say that I was being irresponsible on radio yesterday? Me of all people? Come on!

“I want to know why Searchlight, for all the kind of jokes and kicks and out-of-timing comments that does go down in The News and the Searchlight and The Vincentian, have police every showed up?” he said in reference to the three local newspapers.

Barnwell’s co-host, Too Cool, noted the difference in the action of the police on Wednesday and several years ago when Hans Kings, press secretary to Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves, telephoned the same programme to say had he been in St. Vincent at the time, he would have killed political activist Bryan Alexander over a Facebook post.

“A man called the radio station and said he was going to kill a man. Where was (sic) the police then? But you know what you heard in the long run? ‘Everybody has the right to defend themselves’,” Too Cool said.

Kubiyashi said that while he has “nuff respect for the Police Force” and have many friends who are police officers, the actions of the lawmen on Wednesday could cause people to see the police in a negative light.

“What happened yesterday was a bad judgment call. You did not listen to what I said on the radio yesterday,” he said.

Kubiyashi told listeners that the accusation that he was on radio “promoting and encouraging people to view a sex tape with minors in it and that was the basis of our programme yesterday is a lie.

“And whoever conjured up that lie and said it, you are out of timing,” he said.

“You are really sick in your head, when we are here talking about two minors engaging in in a sex act on film, that is a serious thing. It’s a video that was put into public domain. How it reached into public domain is also a matter that is also [of] grave concern,” he said.

7 replies on “Radio announcer detained after discussing sex tape involving students”

    1. You are quite right it is becoming the norm to arrest people on hearsay with no evidence and do so at their place of work and in public to produce as much damage as possible to the accused individual.

      The police like the Judiciary from the Minister down are out of control. The thing that allows all this to happen was the removal of the PACE police act by PM Gonsalves and his stooges.

      This is a Marxist-Leninist regime, and if we keep that in mind we will understand the gradual destruction of the current way of life as they gradually destroy all that is good to present themselves down the road as saviors and the promise to repair what in fact they created.

  1. Anyone in the position of such material should be charged for promoting child pornography.

    1. Who said he was in posession of such material, he was discussing the matter not showing a video.

  2. TeacherFang says:

    What I am not getting, is this overzealous nature to arrest folks at their work place. It seems the police is in the business of humiliating and embarrassing folks rather than actually doing their job of protect and serve.

    Is it that hard for the police to send ONE OFFICER TO MAKE INQUIRIES ABOUT AN ISSUE WITHOUT MAKING AN ARREST? Why can’t the questioning of the gentleman be done right there at the station? Why this show of force?

    Now, on the issue of the alleged sex video…given that a minor is involved, I think it was in POOR TASTE AND SENSATIONAL FOR THIS RADIO PERSONALITY TO BE HAVING A “DISCUSSION” THIS ISSUE. There is no redeeming value to be had in having such a discussion on such forum as a radio station where the main objective is based in ENTERTAINMENT RATHER THAN IN ERUDITION.

    I do not for one minute buy the “concern” of this radio announcer for the minors involved in this unfortunate escapade. The “discussion” that he had was simply for titillating effect and to keep his listeners entertained.

    I hope the police do not throw the book at this young man and show some leniency. And hope the young girl get some professional counselling and some much parental love and care. Our young people without the proper parental and adult guidance will always go astray. We need to give our young people a second and third chance rather than abandoning them for one mistake.

    Mr Barnwell, you don’t deserved to be arrested but you sure deserved two bulwood for even having such a discussion on the airwaves given the nature of the issue at hand. If you had any class or decency, any concern for these minors, you wouldn’t be at all drawing attention to this video. One more thing, the Newspapers are in the business of reporting the issues that happen in our society and enlightening the masses; there is a big difference between the objective of the newspapers and your radio station.

  3. Although a serious accusation that could potentially undermine someone’s status in society, my comment is not who really said what. What I want to know is this, what is the charge brought against the announcer? Is there really a law in SVG where one can get arrested just by discussing an illegal event? Is it inciting a rape riot?
    This is the second such whimsical arrest I have read about recently in St. Vincent. Someone was also arrested for making comments on Facebook that were negative to the Prime Minister. No threats, just words. Mere opinion.
    So if while visiting my home, I tell a cop where to shove his baton, would I also be arrested at gunpoint?
    Note: This does not condone what was done in the sex tape.

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