Tue | Oct 17, 2017

Cops to beef up security for high-risk MoBay court attendees

Published:Tuesday | June 20, 2017 | 12:00 AMChristopher Thomas

WESTERN BUREAU:

The St James police could soon be putting in increased security measures within the precincts of the St James Parish Court in Montego Bay as an extra layer of protection when persons considered to be high risk are down to appear in court.

This new consideration is as a result of an incident last Thursday in which a man, who was before the court on gun-related charges, was ambushed and murdered shortly after he was granted a bail extension and had exited the court.

"One of the things we will do is look at the persons who have court matters, what type of threat they are susceptible to, and, based on that, we will vary how we monitor and ensure that the entire area is secured," said Deputy Superintendent of Police Gary McKenzie, the officer in charge of operations in St James.

Shortly after exiting the St James Parish Court and driving off towards Queen's Drive, 24-year-old Stephen Elvis Malcolm, an alleged gangster from Canterbury, was ambushed by thugs carrying rifles and was murdered in the heart of mid-morning traffic.

"We really now have to look a little bit more closely, in terms of mapping the area to prevent anything of this nature from happening again," noted McKenzie. "We will vary how we monitor the entire area and ensure that it is secured."

 

SUSTAINED POLICE PRESENCE

 

McKenzie also pointed out that on a day-to-day basis, police are on duty at the St James Parish Court. There are regular police patrols in and around the area, he said.

"It is a place that always has officers attending. Of course, the precincts of the court are something that we look at, and we have patrols along Howard Cooke Boulevard, Gloucester Avenue, William Street and St James Street, so there are patrols in and around the precincts of the court," said McKenzie.

During last Thursday's incident, scores of frightened motorists abandoned their vehicles and fled as the thugs reportedly discharged a barrage of shots as they cornered the ill-fated Malcolm.

christopher.thomas@gleanerjm.com