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.
Rosebud Saturday, 02 January 2016 15:31 Comment Link
Concerned Citizen....If you lived up to your pen name you SHOULD find THIS very CONCERNING.. Yes the young man may have been in the wrong BUT you are missing the picture as that is not what the article is about. The article is about the BEATING ("fall") that he received at the hands of the Police. What he did I'm sure will be addressed later so let's stay focused. Regardless of what he did he did not deserve to be beaten while handcuffed plain and simple!!!!! AND then have the AUDACITY to say he fell....As soon as I saw the pic that was circulating earlier I KNEW beyond a shadow of doubt that those injuries were not consistent with a fall. A fall into a fist or blunt object maybe....SMH...Hats off to the "concerned" officer I command you for that...Shame on those that are trying to hide behind that blue wall of silence. ..I for one anxiously await the Police Statement...I for one am looking forward to the justifying of beating a handcuffed, unarmed male...Yes I agree only one side has been presented but that one side is VERY disturbing. Heaven forbid if this young man's account is truthful....what then?...Report
Bathsheba Jones Saturday, 02 January 2016 15:25 Comment Link
Stop right there! How would you have acted in this situation as a young black male who had always been pulled over by one particular officer? I find it quite hysterical that you are comfortable with classifying all "young teenagers" as "very disrespectful and disobedient" for we are the leaders of tomorrow, and if you were attempting to make a clear distinction between young teenagers it was a failed attempt. Were you ever told to never put all your eggs in one basket? I would like to add with a point of clarification, this young man is NOT from a single parent home. I suggest that you would first investigate this incident and leave your misconceptions of what a black family in Bermuda looks like. As a "concerned citizen" whom of which you claim to be, are you stating that you support this clearly excessive use of force on a minor who was handcuffed? Also, are you supporting these methods in which "society" can now "deal with these children"? How can one who claims to be a "concerned citizen" possibly find these actions justifiable? Once again you are categorizing "young individuals" so effortlessly, it seems that you have to be overlooking all of our outstanding accomplishments constantly in the media, and focusing on our downfalls which have occurred in every other generation INCLUDING YOURS. I refuse to play the "unfair" card because it is clearly outdated. We as teenagers are constantly under scrutiny from society and elders like yourself, correct me if I am wrong, but we have accepted that, that is how it is going to be. Rarely if ever, do you hear us complaining about how unfair it is to deal with badly behaved adults because it is a real issue whether you would like to admit it or not. We are not completely "badly behaved" just like adults are not completely well behaved, like lets face it. Even if a young person is raised in a single parent home they can still be successful and a great citizen within society. In conclusion, it seems as if you are not satisfied with "only hearing one side of this story". I suggest that you contact the Bermuda Police Service for any additional information at 295-0011. Thank you.Report
Jermaine Saturday, 02 January 2016 15:21 Comment Link
Personally. That young boy had no regard or respect for anyone who was on the road. There were gombeys by four star pizza in Hamilton dancing, majority of the dancers were youths ranging from the ages 2-13 and he went speeding through the dancers and the crowd knowing those kids were there. If he would have hit or even decked out those children were in the line to get hurt. I'm not saying it is right what happened to him but it should be a lesson to make better decisionsReport
Rich Saturday, 02 January 2016 15:02 Comment Link
Concerned Citizen why stereotype. This young mans parents are married and have been so for a very long time. They have been involved in his life and community. He is not the product of a single parent home. Also not all children raised by single parents make bad decisions. This young man made a bad decision, maybe out of fear who knows. But whatever the reason, if the police beat him in custody then they are wrong! There is never a reason for this excessive force.Report
Saturday, 02 January 2016 14:54 Comment Link
You are a complete AHole if u feel that beating of a young man like this is right. Yes him running from the police was wrong but does that make it right for him to be beat after stopping?! And than you go and blame the parenting you don't know what families go through. Not everyone has it easy no matter if your parents are there or not! So I suggest you keep your comments to yaself because i know you aren't perfect either!Report
Rupert Hinds Saturday, 02 January 2016 14:51 Comment Link
I agree there is so far only one side to this story, but it seems to me that concerned citizen is condoning this kind of beating if indeed it took place As this young man says. The issue here is whether or not the police acted improperly or unprofessionally. What does coming from a single family home have to do with it? Who are the people besides the courts that have to deal with those breaking the law? The comment from concerned citizen creates far more problems than it solves. This is exactly the type of rhetoric that seeks to label a particular group of people unfairly, assume facts not in evidence, and build scenarios that do not exist!! You have stated that we have only heard one side of the story, yet you have already added a third while discrediting the one. Your own words, Sir/Madam convict you!!Report
Erica Saturday, 02 January 2016 14:49 Comment Link
You're an idiot! His PARENTS went to the hospital, his PARENTS are distraught. You have no idea about this young man's family life. How dare you even say something like that!!! He ran from them, and he admits that. But he didn't fight them, he complied once he stopped. He was handcuffed for pete's sake. You said the police used excessive force but!!!!! There is no but!! Excessive force is unacceptable.Report