I've been following this story in Barbados for the past week or so.
The synopsis is as follows:
Father, Jonas Bjerkham, accidentally shoots himself and his 11 year old son while cleaning gun. Son dies, father is in hospital for injury to his hand and is said to be distraught. Police wish to speak to father, father lawyers up and his lawyer and doctors say he's in no shape to speak to police. Police have him under close watch, escort him to and from the funeral last week and then yesterday somehow amazingly father manages to get out of the island via his private plane. Hmmm.
Well all I can say is that this is another example of one law for the poor and another for the rich which is not just something that happens in Barbados or other small countries cause I could cite the Jaffer case here in Toronto as a recent example as well (google Rahim Jaffer if you're interested).
Now regarding this incident in Barbados, I cant speak to the actual validity of the story of the incident but its still seems a bit sketchy since the father was apparently a gun dealer and well a dude who knew a lot about firearms so you would think he'd know better than to clean his gun when its still loaded with live ammo. However stranger things have happened.
Then there is the kids gloves with which the Royal Barbados Police Force (RBPF) has treated Mr Bjerkhamn. Granted allegedly accidentally shooting ones own child has got to be a rather jarring and tragic experience so some leeway is expected in dealing with the father/shooter so the RBPF can't be totally blamed for showing some compassion and giving Mr Bjerkham time to deal with his grief but at the same time in hindsight clearly he was stalling.
Now one wonders what the police response would have been if Mr Bjerkham was not the scion of a wealthy family. Were it someone like me, god forbid, would I be given the time to grieve, would I have been able to get my doctors to say I'm in no shape to speak to police or to have the RBPF actually obey those doctors orders? Ummm. Would I have been in police custody or have guards at my hospital rooms doors until I was fit to give an account of the incident to police? Would they not have taken my passport and hey I don't even own a private jet yet. (a brother has to have goals right?) You tell me.
And what does Mr Bjerkham fleeing the country under the claim of seeking medical treatment in the US say about his innocence or guilt? I mean there was much sympathy for his dilemma, before he willingly left the country without notifying the police of his intent to leave. This sympathy has now all but evaporated as the citizens clamor for justice and wonder why the rules only seem to apply to those who aren't connected or who aren't rich. Cant blame them can you?
It just sort of hits the average man as a double standard when they realize that innocent or guilty they could not treat the local constabulary with the sort of disdain that Bjerkham and his handlers have and get away seemingly scotch free.
And after events like this we still wonder why the youth in the country don't respect authority.
But who knows maybe I read too much into things. Maybe Bjerkhamn will come back. I'm not holding my breath on it but maybe he will. Still even if that does occur he has clearly shown yet again that someone of his class doesn't need to follow the rules. Money and status talks dudes like Bjerkhamn walk.
But hey we all knew that already right.