Opposition JLP Condemns Beating Death of Mario Deane - Malcolm

Harold Malcolm, the Jamaica Labour Party’s Deputy Spokesperson on Justice today condemned the death of Mario Deane due to beatings sustained while in police custody as horrific and unacceptable for a modern Jamaican society.

Mr. Malcolm, a Human Rights Attorney-at-Law, stated that while he was heartened that the matter has been reported to INDECOM, he was concerned about the differing stories surrounding the violent sad and untimely death of another young Jamaican.

He said:  “What does this type of violent death say about our society on the very day we were celebrating our independence as a civilized and democratic society?  The right to life is the most fundamental of all human rights and agents of the state have a duty to protect that right.  If they fail, justice must be served.  The victim deserves it and his family is entitled to it.”

He said that the impunity which often attends these gross violations must come to an end, and that INDECOM must work assiduously to ensure the truth is uncovered and those who are guilty are brought to justice. 

He said Mr Dean’s death also highlighted the delinquency of the government in stopping the arrest of persons for the possession of small quantities of ganja.  He said: “The promised amendments to the Dangerous Drugs Act must be fast tracked. To avoid this kind of injustice, the Government should also issue interim instructions to the police not to prosecute individuals found with small quantity of the drugs.”

In closing, Mr Malcom said the Opposition, the Jamaica Labour Party extended its condolences to the family of Mr. Deans.  He said “While we know that words will never compensate for his loss we trust that an independent and thorough investigation will help to give them a sense of justice.”