It’s a common assumption in politics: You’re likely to get away with crime if you’re in the know. It appears that being “In,” has its perks as well.
This is surveillance footage of a Guam police officer destroying private property during a raid at a Tamuning residence in March. The couple, who rented the home at the time, said the officers tried to cover up this crime and the near-total destruction of this house by stealing the home surveillance system. What they didn’t realize, is that it was recording to the cloud.
In other footage from the same raid, other officers are seen tossing around a woman’s panty while making derogatory remarks. One cop even sniffs it.
But this footage of a cop briskly walking by a television mounted onto a wall and breaking it with a metal bar needs no introduction or explanation. The TV was not attacking him. It was not in his way. It had nothing to do with that raid.
Kandit sent that footage to the Guam Police Department in April. Following public outcry police chief Stephen Ignacio said he had opened both an internal and criminal investigation.
It is nearly half a year later, and nothing has been done. That police officer remains on the beat.
As a matter of fact, he’s one of the security officers for the governor and lieutenant governor of Guam.
Kandit has asked both the GPD and the Office of the Attorney General whether this police officer is being spared disciplinary action and criminal liability because of his political connections. We directly asked whether the governor, the lieutenant governor, or anyone from Adelup has interfered to prevent charges from being filed against this officer.
There has been no official response.
Guam law requires the publication of reports of completed GPD internal affairs investigations onto the GPD website. Guam’s premier agency tasked with the enforcement of the law has been in violation of the law for years now. This and other adjudicated IA cases are not published. On July 19 this year after the IA review period, Kandit requested the documents pertaining to the case to determine whether GPD was holding its officer accountable for his actions.
The GPD response reads, “The [GPD] Internal Affairs Section has completed its administrative investigation surrounding the search warrant that was served at House 163 Estralita St., Tamuning, on March 31, 2021, by detectives and officers from the Criminal Investigation Divisions and Special Operations Division.”
No other mention of the IA investigation is made in this July 23 response to Kandit, nor were any documents attached.
On September 10, Kandit followed up the issue with the following questions to the police chief, with the attorney general’s office copied in the correspondence:
“It is my understanding, based on the responses I’ve received from GPD, that no disciplinary action appropriate to the illegal destruction of private property has been taken against any police officer involved with the raid into the rental home of [NAME REDACTED].
“The police officer CLEARLY seen in surveillance footage provided to GPD was neither terminated nor suspended; and no criminal charges were ever filed against him.
“Is this because he is or was recently a member of the executive security team?
“Did anyone from Adelup intervene on this police officer’s behalf?
“What explanation do you have for the public, who may wonder why the GPD is not condemning this conduct with appropriate disciplinary action?”
Mr. Ignacio has not answered any of those questions.