This is the last of four stories in which taxi drivers relate their brushes with death, after they were attacked by criminals while on the job.
Sheldon Williams, Gleaner Writer
Forty-one-year-old taxi operator Anthony Nicholson considers himself a very lucky man. Nicholson survived after a gunman shot him in the head while the 'cabbie' sat in his vehicle, waiting on a passenger to return.
Nicholson, also known as 'Fat Head', told Automotives he immediately lost consciousness and referred to the near-death experience as "darkness".
He was pounced upon by four males, who appeared to be in their teens, just after he dropped off a passenger in an east Kingston community. Two appeared to be twins, he said. All armed with guns, they demanded money and ganja.
While he cannot remember the month or year, Nicholson is definite that he was shot between 4:30 p.m. and 5 p.m. "When the person (passenger) gone inna the yard, mi see four youth a peek over a little wall and dem stay deh peek until them jump over and four of dem had guns in their hands. Dem say, 'Hey cabbie, we need some money and thing and we need some ganja'. So mi say 'mi no smoke ganja y'nuh and mi no have no money fi give unno' and one of dem say, 'Hey, taxi boy!' So mi siddung back in the car now, and I don't know nothing more. It's a good thing the shot bounce off the door before it hit mi in the head," Nicholson said.
"Maybe if it never bounce off mi wouldn't deh yah now. After that a just pure darkness mi see," Nicholson said. He regained consciousness at the hospital, but remembers clearly that only one of the gunmen fired. Nicholson was later told that the owner of the house he had parked in front of took him to hospital. The bullet went so close to his right eye that doctors said "dem no know how come mi no dead". He had to be hospitalised for a week after surgery, to allow adequate recuperation time.
Nicholson said that after he regained consciousness, he realised that his money was missing. "After them shoot me, them cut out mi pocket them. I did have about $7,000 and dem tek it," Nicholson said.
He made a police report but did not pursue the case after the cops asked him to transport them to the crime scene. "When me come back out of hospital them want me fi drive my vehicle carry dem up deh go show them a where, so mi tell dem no bother. Mi just drive weh lef them. Is like dem want the man dem finish kill me," Nicholson said. He no longer remembers his attackers.
Nicholson has returned to driving a taxi, arguing "everything is dangerous nowadays. I do another job but that's slow, so I decided to carry on with the taxi work". However, he now works through a taxi company.