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Brenton Smith

Station Sergeant of Police Brenton Smith after testifying at the Serious Offences Court on Monday, Nov. 29, 2021. (iWN photo)

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While unvaccinated police officers have been barred from duty in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, it seems that this is not the case if that duty involves testifying before the court.

Yesterday (Monday) Chair of the Police Welfare Association, Station Sergeant of Police Brenton Smith, who one week earlier told the media that he had been ordered to leave the Georgetown Police Station because he is unvaccinated against COVID-19, testified in a matter before the Serious Offences Court.

Police officers and a wide cross section of public sector workers were to be vaccinated by Nov. 19, if they are to continue in their post, unless they can obtain an exemption on religious or medical grounds.  

If public sector workers for whom COVID-19 vaccination is required report for duty while unvaccinated, they would be considered to be absent and would be deemed to have forfeited their jobs and any accrued benefits after 10 days off the job. 

On Monday, Smith testified in a case in which businessman Terry Baptiste, 40, of South Rivers, was tried on a charge that on June 18, 2021, at San Souci, he unlawfully discharged a loaded firearm and assaulted a 26-year-old bus conductor of Colonarie. 

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When Smith took the stand, he was affirmed and told the court his name and rank and that he is stationed at the Georgetown Police Station.

He then proceeded to give his evidence-in-chief.

As defence counsel Grant Connel began his cross-examination, he told the officer, “It’s good to see you. It’s after the 19th.”

Connell asked Smith for how long he has been an officer and Smith replied, “Over 27 years.”

After exiting the court, Smith told iWitness News that he is still unvaccinated but had been warned for court.

“So here I am to just give evidence in this matter and that’s why I am here.”

iWitness News asked Smith if the fact that he attended court meant that he was at work.

“I have  attended work, I will continue to attend work. This question was asked to me whether or not I would go to court. I have a responsibility to the people of  St. Vincent and the Grenadines to see that justice is being done. And whenever I am  warned for court, I will attend court because there are some matters that I still have before the court. So I will go to court and I will go to work as well.”

Smith said he will also report for duty at Georgetown Police Station today, Tuesday, although his inspector instructed him to leave last week Monday, Nov. 23, because he is unvaccinated.

He said that since then, there were  other matters and meetings “which are duty as well” that he attended to.

Smith said that those meetings were in his capacity as a station sergeant of police and chair of the Police Welfare Association.

“I am a member of the board of directors of the Police Credit Union and all those are basically  duties and I … attended those… 

“But  certainly, I will be attending work tomorrow. I will be going back to work tomorrow as well.”  

Smith, however, said that was not an indication that he planned to get vaccinated.

“When I go back to work, I don’t know what will happen but I am going. All I want to do is to serve the people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, to continue to serve them. So that’s why I am going back to work.”

In the Nov. 22 interview, Smith had said that he did not know if his stance on vaccination would change. 

Yesterday, he told iWitness News:

“I have always given thought to anything. I look at the changes in the science, I look  at it and then I make a determination. So far, I have not seen the changes that will propel me to be vaccinated at this stage.”

Smith told iWitness News that he did not know  what percentage of police officers are vaccinated “because a number of police officers … have since taken the vaccine.

“And that is their right. That is their constitutional right. The Welfare Association has never asked persons  not to be vaccinated. We all time believe that is a choice for our officers and we will  continue to respect that choice, whether you are vaccinated or not.”

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9 replies on “Unvaccinated senior cop attends court despite mandate (+VIDEO)”

  1. sensible person says:

    Even if other countries get rid of government employees that do not vaccinate is that any reason that SVG should copy that policy? The vaccines do not seem to work. What is the point? Even Fauci ADMITTED a few days ago, Covid is never going away. This entire fiasco of experimental vaccines for the man-made virus is a sad “dog and pony show” based on fear. Is all of this worth destroying society by making two classes of citizens based on personal choice, again, besides the fact that the vaccines are proven to not work?

  2. Stanislaus N/A Albert says:

    Sgt it’s sad to see that your colleagues didn’t stand with you Cincy police seems to be a set of cowards

  3. Hetty+Johnson+ says:

    Real comedy country eh! The Ministry of national security didn’t anticipate all these hidden necessary unavoidable duties. Lack property planning, only to tighten the rope around the necks of vincentians.

  4. Vaccination mandate is wrong, and is a violation of the individual’s right. I am ‘fully vaccinated’. I encourage others to take the vaccine but I don’t force them to do it. It’s like saying, a woman can’t or shouldn’t have an abortion if she so chooses.

  5. I am a fully vaccinated person, after doing my own research with lots of prayers. However, I do not support anyone being forced to take a new vaccine that they are not yet sure about and losing their jobs for not taking the vaccine. Therefore, I applaud Mr Smith on his decision and will support him as well if he changes his mind after he is satisfied with the vaccine information later.

    This whole thing of being forced to take a vaccine, a drug, into your body without being sure of its effects in some cases is just wrong and I would there say it indicates a very dangerous mindset of those who agree to and implement such measures against persons who have worked for 10, 15 years or more will lose all their accumulated benefits (if this is really the case as being reported) if they don’t agree to take the vaccine. How can this be right? Both vaccinated and unvaccinated persons can and do catch the covid-19 virus and pass it on to others or even die. In fact, new studies are emerging where this very fact is being shown to be happening more and more-the vaccinated passing on the said virus to other persons, vaccinated and unvaccinated alike and even dying. The argument that tourists will not come if all essential persons are not fully vaccinated does not hold much water as here in the UK and other countries, many people still attend shops and other businesses where some of the workers are unvaccinated, providing the general rules are followed, mask wearing, social distancing etc.

    There is no evidence that I am aware of to show if covid-19 is caught from a fully vaccinated person by a vaccinated or unvaccinated individual that it is somewhat less severe in either cases for that reason. in fact, the evidence seems to indicate it does not matter whether the carrier is vaccinated or not. Covid-19 is covid-19 and the effects upon the individual/s catching the virus will be the same as those who catches it from unvaccinated persons.

    The public needs to ponder on if the government gets away with forcing certain ‘key workers’ to take the vaccine or lose their jobs and accumulated benefits if they do not take the covid-19 vaccine, then where will it stop? It is very likely that once this is allowed to happen, then sooner or later this same attitude/policy will extend to the general public as well, either directly or indirectly. You will find that they will say the unvaccinated cannot use certain services or even travel in public transport, visit their doctors or the hospital etc. Everyone will be forced directly or indirectly to take the jab. Once you start forcing people to take the vaccine jab, they will naturally become very suspicious of taking the vaccine, especially in the woefully inept way in which the matter was handled initially.

    Some countries, Such as Barbados and Grenada have decided not to go down the forced vaccination route, if the information I have received is correct.

    I believe better education of the vaccine and its effect, good or bad, should be properly provided to the public and focused targeting of communities and or individuals of influence who are averse to taking the vaccine by way of dialogue, not by force or a spirit of vindictiveness.

    Forcing people to take the covid-19 vaccine or face losing their jobs, their very livelihoods which they and their families depend on to feed themselves, including babies and young children, can make them become destitute and a liability to the state. This reminds me of the Dark Ages when the Papacy used to issue anathemas or papal bulls against those who did worshipped God based on the Bible and their own consciences and not follow the church’s dictates, instead.

    It is a very slippery slope we are heading down and one from which we may never fully recover from if those in power don’t change their strategy of forced vaccination.

    Uncle

  6. I’m fully vaccinated and have no problems with it. So is my whole family except my eldest son and family who all got covid 19 last year and recovered, so they are not obliged to. I don’t know how people can go around saying that vaccines is killing people and is experimental and even the government has a hidden agenda and bill Gates and other rich people want to reduce the world population or you will die in a year if you vaccinate. What do you people want? We must do nothing about covid 19 or follow d bush-doctor views? f…ing degenerates.

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