Gully dwellers held by cops
Chad Bryan, Gleaner Writer
Beer and rum bottles, and stones were hurled by cross-dressing men and passers-by yesterday morning, as they squared off against each other in New Kingston following a police operation to apprehend two juveniles at Shoemaker Gully. The juveniles had sought refuge in the gully after it was believed that they stole money and a tablet computer.
In the chaos, two members of the security forces - a police woman and head of the New Kingston Police, Superintendent Christopher Murdock - were injured.
"While carrying out the operation I was attacked by one of the men. He is presently in custody. I received injuries to my arm. I do not know if there are other injuries as I fell to the ground in a bid to restrain him," said Murdock.
ALLEGEDLY STOLE $100,000
It is alleged that the juveniles stole the sum of $100,000 as well as the tablet computer from a relative and sought refuge in the gully. It is unclear if the youngsters are part of the community of cross-dressers who are known to live in the gully. One of the juveniles, a 14-year-old, has been handed over to the Child Development Agency.
One of the juveniles was apprehended, but neither the money nor the tablet was recovered.
During the operation to find the juveniles, six men who are said to be responsible for a number of robberies in the New Kingston area were also apprehended and taken into custody. These men were expected to face an identification parade and were, according to police, likely to be charged with larceny.
"Other persons we are seeking include: 'Pebbles', he is the main perpetrator; one who goes by the name 'Batman'; one who goes by the name 'Morris'; and a youngster that we are trying to find now, his name is Tarique."
Murdock acknowledged that some of the men living in the gully have never turned up on police radar as troublemakers, and are simply homeless.
The senior policeman also said that the police would return to the area in short order with more equipment to dismantle sturdily built structures that have been created on the bank of the gully by the men living there.