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Charlotte Amalie
Thursday, May 26, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesVIPD LOOKING INTO ST. CROIX HOTEL MELEE

VIPD LOOKING INTO ST. CROIX HOTEL MELEE

An internal affairs investigation is being conducted by police on St. Croix to determine if officers neglected to take action during a rock-throwing, race-based incident at the Cormorant Beach Resort on Sunday.
In a letter to top V.I. government officials on Monday, Cormorant Beach Resort president Arthur Mayer detailed the physical violence – he was hit over the head with a beer bottle — and racial slurs allegedly to have occurred when several black residents "swarmed" resort property.
When police responded to the resort’s call for assistance, Mayer, who is white, said officers greeted the alleged assailants with "West Indian handshakes" and did little else. Mayer said that because of the inaction, which included destruction of resort property in front of some 50 guests, he is calling for a federal inquiry into civil rights violations.
St. Croix Deputy Police Chief Novelle Francis said Wednesday that the department’s Internal Affairs Division is conducting an investigation into the officers’ conduct. Muddying the picture, however, is whether the alleged actions by the island residents and inaction by police was related to the resort being popular among gay and lesbian tourists.
"If it is, it shouldn’t be," Francis said. "It’s a fact that the Cormorant openly advertises itself as a gay resort. Regardless of color or gender preference, we intend to enforce the law."
Meanwhile, acting Tourism Commissioner Rafael Jackson said he will wait for the internal report before drawing conclusions. Still, he said that what he read in Mayer’s letter was unsettling.
"I’m trying to get a picture of what went down," Jackson said. "What I’m hearing I don’t like. The whole situation has upset me terribly."
Jackson questioned why no arrests were made considering the physical assault on Mayer alone. He said he hopes to have information by the end of the week. Until then, he said there isn’t much he can comment on.
"These are the kinds of answers I’m looking for from the Department of Public Safety," said Jackson. "These are the things I need to know."
In the meantime, Francis said that along with the internal affairs report he has ordered the captain in charge of the zone where the Cormorant is located to conduct "proactive" patrols. The internal investigation, he said, will be completed "post haste."
Editor's note: For the initial story on the incident at the Cormorant Beach Resort on St. Croix, refer to the St. Croix Source.

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An internal affairs investigation is being conducted by police on St. Croix to determine if officers neglected to take action during a rock-throwing, race-based incident at the Cormorant Beach Resort on Sunday.
In a letter to top V.I. government officials on Monday, Cormorant Beach Resort president Arthur Mayer detailed the physical violence – he was hit over the head with a beer bottle -- and racial slurs allegedly to have occurred when several black residents "swarmed" resort property.
When police responded to the resort’s call for assistance, Mayer, who is white, said officers greeted the alleged assailants with "West Indian handshakes" and did little else. Mayer said that because of the inaction, which included destruction of resort property in front of some 50 guests, he is calling for a federal inquiry into civil rights violations.
St. Croix Deputy Police Chief Novelle Francis said Wednesday that the department’s Internal Affairs Division is conducting an investigation into the officers’ conduct. Muddying the picture, however, is whether the alleged actions by the island residents and inaction by police was related to the resort being popular among gay and lesbian tourists.
"If it is, it shouldn’t be," Francis said. "It’s a fact that the Cormorant openly advertises itself as a gay resort. Regardless of color or gender preference, we intend to enforce the law."
Meanwhile, acting Tourism Commissioner Rafael Jackson said he will wait for the internal report before drawing conclusions. Still, he said that what he read in Mayer’s letter was unsettling.
"I’m trying to get a picture of what went down," Jackson said. "What I’m hearing I don’t like. The whole situation has upset me terribly."
Jackson questioned why no arrests were made considering the physical assault on Mayer alone. He said he hopes to have information by the end of the week. Until then, he said there isn’t much he can comment on.
"These are the kinds of answers I’m looking for from the Department of Public Safety," said Jackson. "These are the things I need to know."
In the meantime, Francis said that along with the internal affairs report he has ordered the captain in charge of the zone where the Cormorant is located to conduct "proactive" patrols. The internal investigation, he said, will be completed "post haste."
Editor's note: For the initial story on the incident at the Cormorant Beach Resort on St. Croix, refer to the St. Croix Source.