West New Britain Provincial Police Commander, Superintendent John Midi, says two police officers will be suspended after allegedly assaulting a 15-year old boy.
In a press release today (August 9), the teenager was reported to be assaulted by the two police officers after he allegedly attempted to rob a young woman in Kimbe, West New Britain Province.
“The incident happened three weeks ago but I was not aware of the incident until the matter went viral on social media and Facebook. I identified the officers this morning (Wednesday, 8 August) when I received the video of the incident,” PPC Midi said.
Superintendent Midi said that the matter was referred to the Internal Affairs Unit (IAU) for a formal investigation.
“We will follow all procedures in dealing with the matter,” Supt Midi said.
The assault on the teenage boy was allegedly done by the Airborne Tactical Unit (ATU) officers from Port Moresby. The ATU officers are currently in the Province to assist local police curb a recent upsurge in crime and quell a number of conflicts.
The suspect was caught by the ATU team on a routine patrol. He was arrested, charged and released under the Juvenile Justice Act (JJA) and is now with his parents.
“According to the reports obtained from the medical team, the suspect did not sustain any serious injuries.” Superintendent Midi said, adding that the youth will appear in court this Friday (August 10).
Mr Midi condemned the alleged assault, saying such reactions from police are unwarranted.
He said police are required to use reasonable force in subduing suspects and not assault them as was shown in the video.
“And that the job of the police is to arrest and charge suspects and it is the courts who hand out punishment.”