Teen shot again while lying on sidewalk
A Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) corporal testified yesterday how a police constable shot an injured, unarmed teen following a joint police/military operation in Whitfield Town, St Andrew in July 2007.
The corporal recounted that he, along with then constables Mark Russell and Morris Lee, were part of a joint police/military team that went to premises on Alexander Avenue in the community after receiving a tip about a man armed with an illegal firearm.
The soldier, whose name is being withheld, testified that he fired eleven rounds at the armed suspect and said the teen, Ravin Thompson, was later found inside a yard bleeding from a chest wound.
He testified that as the police/military teams made their way to the Kingston Public Hospital (KPH) with the injured teen in two JDF service vehicles, he heard a female crying and noticed that the sound was coming from the back of his vehicle.
“I looked around and realised a lady was sitting on the floor behind the injured man,” he explained.
The soldier said when the vehicle got to Spanish Town Road, Russell, who was travelling with them, asked the driver to stop “and he pulled the lady from the vehicle.”
He testified that the teams continued to KPH until Russell again asked the driver to stop, this time along Darling Street in downtown Kingston.
Noting that Thompson appeared to be still breathing, the soldier said he overheard Russell asking Lee “wha we a do ‘bout this?”
The witness said following the conversation between the two policemen, he saw Russell “putting the M-16 in the injured man’s hand.”
“Did you see where Constable Russell got the M-16 from?” asked lead prosecutor, Jeremy Taylor, as he led him through his evidence.
“Constable Lee,” the soldier replied.
He testified that immediately after the hand-off, he heard explosions that “sounded like that fired from a M-16 rifle.”
According to him, Russell then looked over to where other soldiers were standing and asked “oonu nah come help we.”
When his question was met with silence, the soldier said Russell, with assistance from Lee, pulled the injured man from the JDF vehicle and placed him on the sidewalk. He said Russell returned the rifle to Lee who used it to fire one bullet “in the direction of the man laying on the sidewalk.”
“He fired a second shot then I heard him say ‘rhatid me miss’. After that he fired another shot in the direction of the man laying on the sidewalk,” the soldier testified.
The trial continues today.