Acting Commissioner of Police McDonald Jacob says family members of individuals applying for Firearms User’s Licenses (FUL) must be truthful to police investigators before they sign off on granting licenses to persons.
His comment comes in the aftermath of complaints about the process used to grant an FUL to a relative who shot Arima resident Allan Stoute to death on Thursday.
Stoute, 38, a father of five, was shot and killed at his Mount Pleasant Road home during an argument with a male relative.
Jacob was responding to claims made by the relatives of Allan However, Stoute’s other relatives told Guardian Media that the suspect, who had a licensed firearm, should not have been given one due to a pattern of behaviour towards the victim. The relatives also said there was the need to better monitor persons who have been granted a FUL.
In response, however, ACP Jacob said, “When the police investigators come to the house of people making a request for a FUL, they interview the person’s wife or spouse. They have to be truthful about the behaviour of the person. If they feel that they cannot speak there, then they should speak to the investigators offsite. And if there is something wrong then say so.”
Jacobs said this is the only way the police would then be able to a proper determination of whether the individual should have a licensed firearm.
He said the process of someone applying for their firearm also entailed passing a psychometric test, medical examination, security checks being made on the person, as well as them obtaining a certificate of good character.
“When all of this is done and the investigators are satisfied, it is then passed on to the senior superintendent of the division and then it is sent to the Commissioner of Police to sign off on,” Jacobs explained.
The suspect in the shooting, Jacobs says, remains in custody as Homicide investigators continue their probe of the matter.
Investigators say they are also looking at CCTV footage that captured the incident on the compound.