Heightened police-military operations for Westmoreland, St James
There are now heightened police and military operations in the parishes of Westmoreland and St James as law enforcement authorities attempt to curb what the police communication unit refers to as the recent spate of killings.
In the latest incidents 44-year-old contractor, Orrett Hutchinson of Barrett Town, Mount Zion, St James and 35-year-old Andre Palakai, a real estate agent on a visit to Negril, Westmoreland from Ontario, Canada were murdered in separate attacks.
"The shooting deaths of a St James businessman and a Canadian visitor on Friday night will not dampen the resolve of the security forces to continue their stated mission," said Police Commissioner Dr Carl Williams in a statement issued by the police Corporate Communication Unit (CCU).
According to the CCU, the decision to increase the police-military operations in St James and Westmoreland was made following a meeting of the National Security Council on June 1 chaired by Prime Minister Andrew Holness.
The National Security Minister Robert Montague, the Chief of Defence Staff Major General Antony Anderson and the Police Commissioner were also in attendance.
According to the CCU, since the start of the operations on Thursday, there have been 37 arrests (including six for murder) and 23 illegal guns and 164 rounds of ammunition have been seized.
In the meantime, the police are asking for information that may help in solving the deaths of Hutchinson and Palakai.
Contact the police:
Police 119 emergency number
Crime Stop - 311
Download the Stay Alert App from the Google Playstore.
IN PHOTO: Police personnel walk with a gun seized in an operation aimed at capturing Marlon 'Duppy Film' Perry in East Kingston.
At the same time, Commissioner Williams said the close collaboration between the police and the military will continue in the strategic deployment and direct targeting of known violence producers across the island.
He said the Jamaica Defence Force has increased its deployment islandwide to support the police with a heavy concentration of troops in Kingston, parts of St Catherine, Clarendon and Western Jamaica.