20 Feb 2018
- By Bryan Manabat – [email protected] – Variety News Staff
A TINIAN resident claims that criminal complaints are being ignored by the island’s Department of Public Safety, but this is not true, according to DPS Resident Director Mathew C. Masga.
He said whenever a criminal complaint is filed with the police, DPS will respond and assess the nature of the complaint and determine if further resources are needed to protect the victim.
“Just because no one was arrested on the scene of an incident doesn’t mean DPS is corrupt or criminal cases are being thrown away,” he added. “It is our responsibility to see that all criminal complaints are investigated thoroughly.”
An assault complaint, for example, must include the victim’s statement, witnesses’ statements, photos of the victim’s physical injuries suffered from the assault, and identification of any weapons used during the assault, Masga said.
At the conclusion of a criminal investigation, he said all reports and evidence collected are forwarded to the Attorney General’s Office for review and to determine whether or not to prosecute.
Tinian DPS is very different today from what it was before, Masga added. “There’s a difference between today and before with many improvements and more training that we give the officers,” he said. “Today’s Tinian police department is an improved department. Now the department is clearer in terms of its goals and objectives.”
As resident director, Masga said he makes sure that police officers undergo training, “because, in the long run, that’s where the quality of work improves in the department which will be beneficial to the community on Tinian.”
He said people are entitled to their own opinions, “but I know that my men and women of the Tinian DPS are following rules and regulations, and are doing their jobs, and that we continue to improve.”
At the same time, he acknowledged the assistance and support their department receives from the Tinian legislative delegation and Mayor Joey San Nicolas.
“From equipment to workshops to training sessions — everything is now available for the Tinian police officers to take advantage of,” Masga added.
He said when he became resident director, there were a lot of accusations about drug use and drug dealing within the Tinian department.
He said he wanted to remove any doubt so all Tinian police personnel had to undergo drug tests.
“Now, as Tinian DPS resident director, I can say that my police officers are clean, and that they continue to strive to make Tinian DPS a better department.”
Source: Marianas Variety : http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/102372-tinian-dps-has-improved-says-resident-director