VIPD Needs Direction to Follow Its ‘Road Map’

Thank you, Commissioner Lewis for the heart-warming holiday wishes in your St. John Tradewinds letter to the taxpayers. It’s comforting to know that you have all of us on your mind, when we all know how much work is ahead for you and your “dedicated, loyal and committed” officers in the VIPD.

Thank you for realizing that much of your success this past year is because of the determination of many outside agencies. Often times, to many of us, it seems as though the “outside” agencies are the only ones actually committed to this “road map to a better future.” You say that members of your department have helped create this map? Well, I say give those members public acknowledgment and continued support for the great work that they do. It is a very difficult job, and it is obvious which officers are using this “road map.”

For the many on your staff who are NOT using this “road map to a better future,” I say give them a road map and an apple. It’s the holiday season, and a bad time for them to be confronted on their performances, but something needs to be done about the many bad apples that you have on your staff. Find them and fix them. They do some wonderful work and should be willing to take the next steps in serving our citizens professionally.

SYNERGY? The public opinion of the performance of your department is as much a synergist as the outside agencies that you speak of, and it should be mentioned in your holiday letter as one of the strongest substances in this synergy that you boast about.

Certainly, you would admit that. The whole IS much greater than simply the sum of its component parts. Whose component parts are working harder toward a better future? The citizens, or your department? Put that one out for public opinion, and you will find an answer you need to drive safely on the “road map.”

You are creating a more powerful law enforcement network, which has resulted in a team of interagency partnerships capable of making a much greater dent in crime? So, are you saying that St. Johnians can rest easy now, and the drug dealing, assaults and robberies are coming to an end? You know who is doing it, and you are going to make them stop? Or are you saying that your officers on St. John know who is doing it, and that they will make them stop? If this is true, I say that your men and women are the best in the business!

You mentioned that community-oriented policing is on the rise. It doesn’t seem so on St. John, Mr. Commissioner. You could probably take the ferry over here right now and find most of your new fleet of vehicles parked in front of the station. If they’re not there, then they are running somewhere like The Marketplace, obstructing the entering traffic because they are parked in front of the walkway to the stores. The officer may be at the bank or getting a video to rent—who knows?

With all of those cars out in front of the police station, it’s a wonder that your officers can be out doing their “community-oriented” policing. It’s a wonder to us all indeed.

The second installment of vehicles will have no place to park, because the lot is already full. (It usually is.) You should come over right now and see for yourself.

I could go on for two more pages, but I think you get the picture.

This IS your watch, and we are the ones responsible for your successes. Thank you for the mention. This IS surely a time for members of your department to rejoice in their successes, be acknowledged for their hard work, and to greet the future with renewed spirit, energy and anticipation. So, why don’t our officers smile and engage with the citizens in a consistent positive manner? Find the answer to that question, and you will now be driving the speed limit on the proper side of your new “road map.”

Thanks for keeping in touch with us over here lately. It’s the most correspondence we have seen in many years. Beware! Thou doth boast too much.

May the New Year bring you and your family peace and happiness. May it also bring good driving lights to help guide your hardworking force to find this “road map to a better future.”

Happy New Year and good luck, sir.

A concerned synergist on beautiful St. John,
M. Campo