Fri | Jan 15, 2021

'That's my picture, not cop killer's,' says Ex- US Marine

Published:Saturday | June 13, 2020 | 12:00 AM
This undated photo of Rohan Coombs, published by the Associated Press in 2010, has been circulating as the younger photo of the alleged killer of two cops in Horizon Park, St Catherine yesterday, Damion Hamilton.

Fifty-three- year-old Rohan Coombs, the man whose photograph is being circulated, as a younger version of Damion Hamilton, the man killed by police yesterday in Cooreville Gardens, St Andrew, says he has contacted his lawyer about the incident. 

Coombs, who served in the US Marine Corps for six years and was deported approximately 10 years ago, is baffled about why his photograph has been circulating as the purported younger version of the alleged killer. 

"We have a similar background, but I don't know him," Coombs, who is also from a St Catherine address, insisted. 

"I don't know why my picture is next to him and why my name is being circulated in the media," he said. 

He said he has been receiving several calls from concerned family members about the situation. He said the concerns has led him to contact his lawyer. 

"I don't want anyone come knocking on my door with any ill intention," the concerned man told our newsroom. 

According to an Associated Press report in 2010, Coombs emigrated to the United States legally as a child with his family. He signed up to serve the US in the Marine Corps for six years - first in Japan and the Philippines, and then in the Persian Gulf during the first war with Iraq. 

After returning from the Persian Gulf in 1992, he became depressed, according to the report and got involved with drugs. He was court-martialled for possession of cocaine and marijuana with the intent to distribute and given 18 months of confinement, as well a dishonourable discharge.

He got married after his discharge, but his troubles began again after his wife's death from diabetes-related complications in 2001. He started smoking marijuana again.

In 2008, he was arrested for selling marijuana to an undercover officer while working as a bouncer in an Orange County bar and spent eight months in state prison.

US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) found that his criminal convictions made him eligible for deportation, and he was turned over to ICE after serving his sentence. He appealed, but was deported. 

Hamilton, Gleaner a source confirmed, also served in the US Marine Corps. He was also deported. 

He was living on Queens Drive in Horizon Park, St Catherine for about three years and was recruited by an individual in the area to help fight a turf war, the source explained.

Hamilton was killed yesterday afternoon by police in Cooreville Gardens, St Andrew, who were on the hunt for the killers of 26-year-old Detective Corporal Dane Biggs and Constable Decardo Hylton, who had been attacked in Horizon Park yesterday morning. Two other cops, including Superintendent Cleon Clunis were left critically injured, while a third policeman was injured during the exchange of bullets that led to Hamilton's death.  

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