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By Jeune Bailey Van-Keric
BEST Cop, Detective Corporal Dexter Thornton, recalled that it was his commitment to fight against criminal elements and preventing them from taking control of the country, which has allowed him to remain as a member of the Guyana Police Force over the years.
Thornton, who recently copped a double award for being the Best Cop, nationally and divisionally, joined the Force in 1990. He moved from general duties at Brickdam Police Station, then to the Immigration and Passport Office, Eve Leary, as an Immigration Officer. He later became a Detective at the East La Penitence Police Station, after being successful at the Criminal Investigation Department induction course in 1994.
Speaking with the Chronicle in his shared office at 'B' Divisional Headquarters, New Amsterdam, Thornton said, "my success must be credited to God and my mentor, former Detective Inspector Angel, whose supervision I worked under in earlier years. He taught me to do my best despite the situation, and due to his investigative knowledge imparted, I am able to be successful in whatever investigation I am tasked with."
He recalled with pride some of his major investigations, which led to prosecution after his transferal to Berbice Division in 1998.
Murder of Kistmat Ally of Shieldstown, Blairmont, where two siblings were charged, but the matter was subsequently discharged for want of prosecution, as the witnesses remained absent during court hearings.
Murder of Shawn Warde allegedly committed by Gladwin King and Denny Lindie. The duo is presently committed to stand trial at the Berbice Assizes.
Trafficking in narcotics - Charles Alexander, who is presently serving a five-year sentence after being found guilty of trafficking in 2.5 kilogramme of cocaine.
The uncovering of the old age pension scam where several postmasters and postal clerks were interdicted.
During his 11 years in the Force, Thornton was successful at the three examinations, which were required as a Police Officer - which are the Constable-Corporal, Inspectorate and Gazzetted. In addition, other certificates were obtained from several courses he had completed. Among those are Junior Investigative, Drug Interdiction and Narcotic Investigation, from the Police Training Centre, Seawell, Barbados.
The Police Officer, who has one child, is currently pursuing a Diploma in Marketing at the University of Guyana, Tain Campus.
Thornton, who was previously married and is Assistant Coordinator for the Berbice Community Policing Group, described himself as an optimistic, all round investigator, and a lover of challenges, particularly in the area of investigative work. The Detective Corporal also reminisced on some difficult patches in his life, but stated once there is determination to fight against the odds, it will see you through.
"My success was not without difficulties or disappointment, but I have used the stumbling blocks as stepping stones for achievements," he said.
He urged the community to continue to support the Force in its fight against crime and noted that the organisation, though … criticised in the past, has since made radical changes through the training of its ranks locally and overseas… And with the acquisition of protective gear and weaponry, they are better equipped to deal with crime effectively so that the public can be guaranteed safety.
He encouraged recruits to have an appreciation for the laws, which govern them, and to dispense those laws in a manner acceptable to society.