Gary Spaulding, Senior Gleaner Writer
So choked up was he that 41-year-old Lester Reid struggled to speak, as he sat dejected, his hands on his head, his eyes unseeing and unblinking.
Lester's 17-year-old son, Tyrone Romar Reid, a Jamaica College (JC) student, will never know how well he fared in the seven subjects he sat in the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate examinations last month.
A mere three weeks after he graduated from JC, Tyrone became the victim of a policeman's bullet - his young life snuffed out under circumstances that have sparked a probe by the Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM).
Tyrone was one of four men killed in Windsor Heights, St Catherine, early Friday morning.
Tyrone's father, a farmer who resides in Mason River, Clarendon, told The Gleaner he sent his son to spend the fifth-form year with his two cousins, Dwayne and Delroy Johnson in Windsor Heights, in a bid to facilitate easier access to the Hope Road-based institution as he was preparing for exams.
Lester Reid walks with the graduation portrait of Tyrone, the first of his four children, as well as his graduation certificate, his identification card and other reminders of the 17-year-old.
"I just break down in tears. It's my first son and I worked so hard on him. I tried everything by farming in the country and selling in the market. Sometimes it was so difficult when he came to my house for his lunch money and food," he recalled.
"No one would want to see him go down like that. It's time that they (the authorities) stop this foolish practice by the police to shoot first and ask questions after," Reid lamented.
Shot in house
Tyrone's cousin, Dwayne, was also killed in the incident. Dwayne's common-law wife, Rochelle White, stood silently and seemingly calm, until she could no longer hold back her emotions.
Reid said Dwayne and two of his friends were occupants of a motor car that was shot up by the police but Tyrone was inside the house with his other cousin, Delroy.
"They ordered Delroy out of the house and then they killed Tyrone," he claimed.
Reid said the police had claimed they had been pursuing a man who ran through the premises at the time of the shooting, which led them into the house.
The official police report stated that officers from the Area Four Special Ops Team were on an operation in the area when they encountered four men in a car and signalled the vehicle to stop.
The police said the occupants failed to comply with their instructions and alighted from the vehicle. Their report added that one fled and those who remained behind opened fire on the police, who then took evasive action and returned the fire.
The report further stated that the police team, which was divided into two groups, entered a premises nearby where they were fired upon. One of the officers was hit in the chest through his bulletproof vest. The men were engaged and one was hit.
The police said on their return to the car, three men were found suffering from gunshot wounds.
The fourth occupant escaped. The injured men were taken to the Spanish Town Hospital where they were pronounced dead. The injured officer is currently undergoing treatment.
According to the police, three firearms were recovered - a Browning 9mm pistol with nine rounds, a Super 38 pistol with one live round, and a Walther pistol with two .380 rounds.