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Riot on Bank Lane in Downtown Nassau

This morning, both daily newspapers in The Bahamas have screaming headlines dealing with this story.

Over 100 people gathered on Bank Lane yesterday for the arraignment of Javan Colebrooke, 30, who is charged with the murder of Lynden Bethel Jr, son of notorious drug dealer and hit man Lynden “Dodo” Bethel Sr.

Bethel Jr was stabbed to death outside Club Illusions on East Bay Street, Sunday morning.

Police failed to clear the area prior to the arraignment. They should have known better.

A commentary, published only a few weeks ago, referred to an editorial in The Tribune cautioning police that the Bank Lane area is a “a tinderbox just waiting for the right day and the right match to set it off.”

Well, that day came yesterday as police struggled, and failed, to maintain control over a rowdy crowd who were shouting obscentities at Colebrook as he was escorted into the court for his arraignment before Chief Magistrate Roger Gomez.

Colebrooke, unfazed by the unflattering attention, responded by shouting a few choice words of his own.

That only made the crowd crazier.

Traffic was stopped and police reinforcements had to be called in.

An officer from the SWAT team jumped up on a car and waved a gun at the crowd of troublemakers, mainly members of drug thug Bethel’s family.

That only made the crowd crazier.

When ASP Bradley Sands, head of the Police Tourism Unit, came to the officer’s aid, he was hit in the head with some unknown object. Then, a crazy woman grabbed Sand’s walking stick and started beating him about the head and body as he lay on the ground.

That, my friends is the start of anarchy.

The SWAT officer who had waved the gun at the crowd earlier, then fired a shot into the air.

Shortly after that, officers from the Mobile Unit and the Security Intelligence Branch arrived to provide assistance.

All this drama in the middle of our downtown area, in front of tourists, some of whom watched in horror while others laughed and videotaped the mayhem.

If anything, the incident proved the wisdom of the earlier warnings and exposed the weaknesses in security and crowd control in the Bank Lane area.

It also shows how quickly The Bahamas is descending into a lawless society with no respect for the rule of law.

When it was all over, police had arrested four men and three women.  Who knows if they will ever be punished.  Police have a hard time prosecuting anyone from the drug-thug crowd, probably because so many police officers are part of that same crowd.

Meanwhile, back to Colebrooke’s arraignment, which finally did occur.

The suspect was not required to enter a plea to the murder charge. A preliminary inquiry will be held to determine if there is enough evidence for a Supreme Court trial.

Allegedly corrupt Magistrate Derence Rolle will set a date for the preliminary hearing on November 15.

Oh, by the way, Chief Superintendent Emerick Seymour, officer in charge of the Central Police Station, said that beginning today, police will ensure that persons who have no legitimate reason to be on Bank Lane are not allowed to assemble.

Another bit of sick irony… a young Bahamian woman was recently sentenced to prison for making a death threat to another woman on Facebook.

Several of drug-thug Bethel’s family and friends made even more serious death threats, live and in person, yet they will never be prosecuted.  Why?

Could it be because the drug-thug bosses have so many cops, judges and AG lawyers in their pockets?

How do YOU feel about your Bahamas descending into anarchy?  What do you think about the drug thug takeover of the Bahamas?

Please comment below.

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