Agents of the Police Bureau from Ceiba and Fajardo responded to an incident that occurred this afternoon, Saturday, at the boat terminal of the Maritime Transport Authority (ATM) located in the former Roosevelt Roads naval base from Ceiba after A minor baseball team passed the checkpoint to board one of the ships..
Through written statements, the Integrated Transportation Authority (ATI) highlighted that “Approximately 20 people without tickets forced their way past security personnel and Puerto Rico Ferry crew before boarding the ship (which would depart at 1:00 p.m. to Vieques) and refused to disembark.”.
“The crew, following Puerto Rico Ferry’s ticketing and boarding policies, as agreed with ATI, requested that people without tickets disembark. The refusal of people without tickets to disembark led the captain of the ship to notify the Police to request help,” the agency added, while noting that “all Puerto Rico Ferry vessels and related ticketing policies are subject to federal and state safety regulations.”
For this reason, ATI added that they notified the Coast Guard about the situation.
However, the Commander Kenneth Figueroa QuinonesFajardo Zone Commander of the Police, He denied ATI’s written statements by highlighting that the people did have tickets, but that they were to board the boat that would leave at 4:00 in the afternoon..
“A minor baseball team was in a game in the Fajardo area and they had tickets for the boat that would leave at 4:00 pm. Since a boat left at 1:00, they decided to get on the boat because they said it was going. empty. When we arrived at the scene, we found that the captain (of the boat) had decided not to sail, so we entered into negotiations“, highlighted the officer by telephone.
“There were children involved and we controlled the situation to prevent tempers from escalating. Lieutenant Olivo, from the Ceiba District, was very diligent and we began to talk. Lieutenant Olivo spoke with the captain and decided to open the doors. To our surprise, the boat was not full to capacity, we must admit. The children ended up getting on, along with the leader, and even some people who also had tickets for 4:00 pm and who were waiting,” Figueroa Quinones stressed.
The Fajardo Zone Commander added that they are keeping an investigation open to determine if any offense occurred (as minors were involved), “because they crossed a checkpoint, a security point.” “There were other people waiting, but the baseball team was the only one that crossed the security point,” he said.
“As part of the investigation, the captain of the boat told Lieutenant Olivo that he had 40 spaces available on the boat. That there was space, well there was space, but I don’t know if they (ATI and HMS Ferries) have a specific policy on that. But the team and the people had tickets and there were open spaces on the boat,” Figueroa Quinones emphasized.
For its part, Ricardo Castrodadpress spokesperson for the Coast Guard, confirmed that the force was notified about the situation by ATI personnel when the situation arose at the security point, but that the Police were the entity that attended to the situation.