Since the death of Sergeant Philbert Chambers on April 26, 2020, we have been in constant contact with the Royal St. Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force and held meetings with the commissioner of police (COP) and senior ranking officers in August 2020. In addition, discussions were also held with the chief investigating officer, the last of which was on Thursday, May 26, 2021, about the course of the investigation, including some information/theories and speculations that have been voiced within the public domain regarding the death of Sgt Chambers.
Despite this, the family refers to the previous statement of reassurance made by the COP and the Minister of National Security, Dr. Hon. Ralph Gonsalves, of a fair and transparent investigation.
With this assurance, the family continues to have a keen eye on the process of the investigation. The family is well equipped and resourceful to make professional assessments and evaluations based on the evidence surrounding the death, having had members of the family who have served in the Royal St Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force, and two who have also served in the British Army. In addition to this, the family also has a wide range of experts who stand ready to evaluate the documents and evidence surrounding the death of Sgt Chambers and provide a further statement, if needed.
We also refer to a statement made by former narcotic officer Corporal Fitzbourne Chambers, brother of the deceased: “Let the evidence speak.” This will be the guide as to what actions the family will take.
As a family, we believe in the “rule of law,” and, like any country’s citizens, we are dependent on the judicial system to provide clarity and transparency in such matters.
Nevertheless, we are also aware that such systems are not always perfect and have their flaws. With this in mind, the family stands ready to robustly challenge the system or anyone to ensure that there is no miscarriage of justice and that the actions or inaction of others do not taint the legacy of Sgt Chambers.
However, we hope that the public can appreciate that having not seen the evidence that it will be inappropriate for the family to cast any judgment, as the investigation remains active. The family is also mindful that Sgt Chambers was a brother, son, uncle, and public servant who has performed his duty without fear or favour. We remain assured that the taxpayers of St Vincent and the Grenadines also stand ready to ensure that justice is being served.
However, the family does not want to politicise this matter and sees this as a bipartisan effort. We, therefore, call on all the respective agencies: the prime minister of St Vincent and the Grenadines, the leader of the opposition party, the COP and Director of Public Prosecutions to double their effort in ensuring that due process is done and that justice is conducted expeditiously, while at the same time maintain the highest standard of investigation.
Finally, we continue to be touched by the unvarying support that we have received from members of the judicial system regarding the level of professionalism and competency that Sgt Chambers has performed during his course of duty.
We also remember some of the many accolades that the COP and others made: that Sgt Chambers “did the work of nine men”. The family will hope that this work ethic reciprocates in the investigation.
More importantly, the family was touched by the support and words of comfort and compliments from the citizens of St Vincent and the Grenadines. Such comments have had a long-lasting impact on the family and have been part of the healing process. Thanks again for the support and, as was mentioned by the COP on June 2 2021, (published in iWitness News).
We look forward to receiving written confirmation in a few days about the stages of the investigation and the processes that would follow after that.
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