Sat | Sep 22, 2018

Ski Mask gang re-surfaces, as concerns heighten in Trelawny

Published:Friday | September 14, 2018 | 12:00 AMAlbert Ferguson/Gleaner Writer

Western Bureau:

The Ski Mask gang, which was partially wiped out last March when six of its top-tier members were killed in a gunfight with a police-military patrol on the Trelawny-St James border, is back on the radar of lawmen and creating serious concerns.

Speaking at yesterday's monthly meeting of the Trelawny Municipal Corporation, Superintendent of Police Dwight Powell, who heads the Trelawny Police Division, said the gang, which is now led by Adrian 'Lippy' Walker, recently engaged the police in a shootout.

"We have a breakaway group up in Trelawny that we believe is a migration of criminal elements from elsewhere in Jamaica, especially St James," Powell told councillors. "We have segments of the Ski Mask gang that were dismantled in St James operating over in Bunkers Hill."

Powell told the councillors that the police would be pulling out all the stops in an unrelenting campaign to apprehend the gang members and their leader, noting that the group could undermine the safety of the parish.

"I want to advise them (the gangsters) to put down their guns and stop their criminal activities because we will not run away ... our job is to ensure that we have a crime-free society," said Powell. "I want to say to their family members to bring those people to us because our efforts will be relentless in pursuit of them."

Last year, Trelawny emerged as the most peaceful parish in western Jamaica with 21 murders. However, with three months to go before the year ends, the parish has already recorded 20 murders.

"Based on the present statistics, the trajectory that we are on is indicating that we will surpass last year's figure of 21 (murders), which is very unfortunate," said Powell.