Tue | Dec 6, 2016

Double murder follows shooting of youths in Fletcher's Land

Published:Wednesday | October 22, 2014 | 12:00 AM

Only hours after three children were shot with a firearm that fell into the hands of a reckless youth, Fletcher's Land in Kingston was hit by a second tragedy on National Heroes Day.

The children, including two sisters, narrowly escaped death, but a couple from the area, attacked in an unrelated incident outside the community, was not so fortunate.

The two, identified as 42-year-old businessman Steve Reid, also known as 'Splicer', and his common-law wife Tanya Simpson, were found dead from stab wounds at a home in Leas Flats, St Andrew.

They were reportedly murdered in front of their children and their assailants made off with a 2008 BMW and a 2005 Nissan Caravan.

The adults, spoken of in hushed tones, were described as persons who once enjoyed a close-knit relationship with former Tivoli Gardens strongman Christopher 'Dudus' Coke.

"A gangster thing this," one man said. "It had to happen one of these days."

The Police High Command has established a temporary post in Fletcher's Land in the vicinity of Love Lane and North Street, metres away from the spot where the children were shot.

"This senseless act must stop! This can't continue!" wailed a chorus of despondent residents.

BLOOD-STAINEDSTREET

They were reacting to the shooting of the seven-year-old girl and her 16-year-old sister. A 15-year-old boy, described as an accomplice of the attacker, was also hit.

Blood stains were still visible along North Street when The Gleaner went into the area yesterday as residents huddled in groups, talking.

Residents said they belonged to the 15-year-old accomplice of the teen who allegedly carried out the act. Although wounded, the youth had attempted to flee but was reported to be under police watch.

Pointing to the stains, Dave, a friend of the mother of the two injured girls, who was identified only as 'Shakra', said: "That is where he ran (in the direction of the Kingston Public Hospital)."

The mood in Mark Lane was sombre, when The Gleaner went to Shakra's home.

She was reportedly at the Bustamante Hospital for Children, where her younger daughter is admitted.

Residents said the children were in stable condition.

Speculation about motive for the shooting of the two girls is rife in the community.

Dave told The Gleaner that the sisters were trailed along North Street by the two boys until they arrived at the intersection with Church Street when a barrage of shots shattered the mood of a relaxing holiday evening.

He said when news reached Shakra, she ran the near 300 metres like a woman possessed, not hearing the offers of assistance from onlookers.

"She heard nothing as she rushed across the street," said Dave.

A photographer who lives in Fletcher's Land, Dave told The Gleaner he frequently worked for the family.

He said his worst fears were realised when he saw the injured children.

"The mood in the community is just weird," he said.

gary.spaulding@gleanerjm.com