The Trinidad and Tobago Police service will do what it must at this time. The words of Police Commissioner, Gary Griffith on the heels of news from National Security Minister, Stuart Young on Wednesday, that government had scrapped its plan to hire four private security companies to assist with residential patrols during this time – a relative nationwide lockdown.

On Wednesday night, mere hours after the announcement, reports of gunshots in the vicinity of the Maraval Police Station, near Moraldo Street, surfaced. Reports indicate that a Nissan TIDA motor vehicle had been shot at, and the driver had been killed, while three others had reportedly been injured. A video also surfaced, showing a young man, presumed to be a Venezuelan national, covered in blood, yet still alive, on the pavement. He was told by the person recording the situation, to remain where he was, the police were on their way.

In a Guardian newspaper report, Commissioner Griffith explained that members of the Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force were already assisting TTPS with patrols and it was felt that the policy of retaining the four private companies would’ve assisted the police. “It just means that I have to stretch the Area of Responsibility of my Units,” said the CoP.

The Police Commissioner told the Trinidad Guardian that he had been “informed and briefed” about the use of private security to bolster visibility in residential areas,” prior to the announcement on Tuesday.