Crime concerns mount in Portland - Double murder in usually quiet Drapers
Two more murders in Portland have left some residents worried that the crime which has plagued other sections of the island is making its way to the usually peaceful parish.
In the latest incidents, two men were killed in the quiet district of Drapers Heights.
They have been identified as 43-year-old Asan Anderson, a Jamaican living in The Netherlands, who it appears was the target of the killers, and 48-year-old Leroy McCoy of a White River, Buff Bay, address, who appears to have been in the wrong place at the wrong time.
The killings have sent shock waves through the Drapers community.
"I jumped up after hearing multiple explosions," said a resident who lives close to where the shootings took place.
The resident who gave his name as 'Shabba' said: "I had just retired to bed after watching a movie. It is quite unusual for such explosions, which I detected as being gunshots, to be taking place in this community, as it is very peaceful and quiet.
"It was sometime after that I heard sirens and then detected voices. I ventured outside and realised that the police had arrived. This is a nightmare, and we are not accustomed to such brutal slayings. It is a sad day for us in Drapers Heights, as one of our own was snuffed out."
According to the police, four armed men entered the community and parked a grey Toyota Axio motor car near a house while awaiting the arrival of its occupants, who had gone to a wake.
The police said at approximately 4 a.m. Anderson, who had returned to the island last Thursday after spending some 10 years in The Netherlands, his wife and a brother-in-law reached home and went inside, leaving the door open.
The gunmen entered the house and tied up the brother-in-law before locking him in a room.
They then went upstairs where they found Anderson with his wife, who managed to escape.
An argument reportedly ensued and Anderson was overheard pleading for his life.
He was shot four times in the head, three times in the chest, and once in the arm and leg.
The men then left the house, and on reaching where the car was parked they saw McCoy, who was sleeping in a pickup truck.
The gunmen shot McCoy several times before making their getaway.
MP condemns killing
Member of Parliament for East Portland Dr Lynvale Bloomfield, who was quickly on the scene, pronounced both men dead.
Bloomfield later condemned the incident, which he noted had put a serious dent in the peace and calm once enjoyed by citizens.
"This is not only frightening but worrying," said Bloomfield.
"It therefore means that residents will have to cooperate with the police and tell what they know, for the police to pursue the likelihood of bringing the criminal elements to justice.
"It is not going to be easy, but we all have to join hands in fighting this monster called crime. My condolence goes out to the bereaved family," added Bloomfield.
The Portland police have recorded eight murders in the parish since the start of this year.