A Pembroke mother is distraught after claiming her teenage son was badly beaten by Police after being involved in a motorcycle chase.
Speaking exclusively to Today In Bermuda, Leasser (Lisa) Swan says she received a number of phone calls just after 7.30 last night from people claiming that they saw her son, Stanwon, 17, being beaten by a Police officer—despite the boy being handcuffed.
According to Mrs. Swan, her son was spotted by officers riding a 100cc bike, which would have rendered him disqualified from riding the vehicle by age. When officers tried to stop him, he gave chase before pulling over in the western bus layby on St. John’s Road, near the bottom of Berkeley Hill.
And, by the youth’s account (see video below), when he stopped, he raised his hands in the air. He was then handcuffed by the two officers who chased him and then one proceeded to beat him about the head and face.
Mrs. Swan says after receiving the calls, she and her husband rushed to the Hamilton Police Station to locate her son, but he was not there.
“I was told that he was being taken to the hospital because he has fallen and hurt his face,” she says.
Her daughter, Malisa, went in to see the teenager first, and when she came out of his room, Mrs. Swan says she was crying.
“When I went in and saw my son, I lost it. I was very upset and was screaming, ‘What did they do to my son’. I was so upset that I had to leave because I was causing a scene and I didn’t want to end up in trouble.”
Malisa has been dealing with hospital staff on behalf of her devastated parents.
“My brother is in a lot of pain and remains in the hospital with bleeding on the brain. He cannot eat. The doctor told me that he was definitely beaten with something but he is unable to say what. He has no bruises on his arms or lower body; just his head and face. He spent the night but is still in Police custody because of the chase.
“My family is not saying him not stopping was right but there was no need for them to beat him like this.
We would also like to point out that there was one officer, Sgt. Astwood who seemed bothered by what happened. He tried to clean up my brother’s face and was asking a lot of question about what happened.”
“My brother knows what he done wasn’t right, but it doesn’t mean that they had the right to almost kill him.”
Today In Bermuda reached out to the Bermuda Police Service for comment and was informed that a statement is forthcoming.
Jeanna Scott Monday, 04 January 2016 17:15 Comment Link
WOW!! As I read the comments above, I am astonished and shocked at where we are as a people. First and foremost, I don't condone the young man's disobedience of the law at all, however the police are here to protect and serve. At no time should a civilian regardless of age, race or any other demographic be beaten in this manner.Report
Yes, I have read the police statement that the young man violently resisted arrest; what else would you expect them to say. Why is the young man's injuries from these pictures only about his head and face. One would think that a trained police officer attempting to subdue a person would first take out their legs in order to immobilize them.
Then there are the comments that go all into his household, and the "single" parent issue, a well as his behavior. Well let me say this, continue blaming the victim when it comes to police brutality. Right now it's this, watch where it escalates.
jerome B Sunday, 03 January 2016 19:24 Comment Link
To those who think no matter how rude or what ever crime the teen did, he should not have been beaten by the Police... Go kiss your mother somewhere!! What if he had a ???. First of all, what you call beaten by police is legal and is termed use of force. He clearly refused to stop when asked to, so some measure of force had to be initiated right ? what about resisting arrest? You think he would just submit to the first officer who got to him? Well, a point of learning to those who commit crime. The police is authorized to use force sometimes, even if it results to death unfortunately. Now the beating was good for him. Let's now wait for the circumstances to see if the amount of force was excessive. Know your law.Report
Junnigh Sunday, 03 January 2016 10:07 Comment Link
Protect and serve vs Judge and JuryReport
Police Force vs Police Service
The police was chasing the boy bc they are here to protect and serve Bermuda. Their job is not to become judge and jury! We are mixing up people jobs here the court system does the judge and jury thing for us ppl even in that the judge and jury thing NO ONE GETS BEATEN!!! The cat n nine tail was last done in what year in Bermuda? Show me by law or in a police rule book were they have the right to beat a criminal for any reason and I would have to leave this one alone. Clearly many here have their eyes wide shut because of emotions from either being there seeing the chase or pass knowledge of the boy which is all irrelevant to the polices actions. The police are here to uphold the law not back it when they want to.
Mariie Sunday, 03 January 2016 01:45 Comment Link
You people are outrageous and cant believe you as Bermudian people would say this yes if you do the crime you do time, but if it was your child you all would be doing the same thing yes he deserves a different way punishment but not almost beaten to death by police officers. These police officers should be ashamed of themselves and I bet you they aren't even BERMUDIAN. all of you people saying that right now what if that was you regardless of what you done in the past because I am more than sure you have done something bad so don't go on like that. This boy is 17 years-old and these police officers could have handled that a different way just because he didn't feel like talking your going to beat him have some respect and take him in to the police station at least. BY they way we know its not America its Bermuda.. It doesn't really matter if he has single parents or not because some that are still together act strict to you people need to realize this was not the way to handle the situation like it wasn't even just 1 cop multiple.Report
louise Saturday, 02 January 2016 22:56 Comment Link
Well..finding it very hard to feel sorry for this boy. He knowingly led the police on a chase that put the lives of many children and adults in jeopardy..a gombey group dancing near PizZa House. He was redirected just minutes before and with total disregard for the safety of our children, he came blazing thru the crowd. I shudder to think what could have happened if he had hit one of us. The children were very frightened and upset by the incident. He could have chosen any other street. His actions speak volumes..seriously son..you should thank God that you are not facing a more serious charge. We thank God for keeping all of us safe during this incident.Report