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Security forces on edge in St James after killing of influential man in Granville

Published:Monday | September 4, 2017 | 12:00 AMJason Cross
Terrence Williams, commissioner of INDECOM.

Despite announcing that things are under control within the first zone of special operations in Mount Salem,

St James, members of the security forces are now on edge after receiving threats from angry gangsters in Granville following the killing of one of their cronies on the weekend.

The death of 27-year-old Curtis Coke, who the police say is a known violence producer, has forced cops to be on the lookout for a reprisal attack.

According to reports, Coke shot at the police and they returned fire. He was pronounced dead at hospital.

The Jamaica Constabulary Force's (JCF) corporate communications head, Superintendent Stephanie Lindsay, said yesterday that gangsters with high-powered weapons have gone on parade in the area.

"At the end of it, he was found with gunshot wounds. This happened around 5:45 in the morning. One 9mm pistol was seized from him. I had a discussion with Senior Superintendent [Marlon] Nesbeth, who is in charge of St James, and reported that since the incident, some of his (Coke's) cronies have been sending death threats to members of the security forces.

"They escalated this morning (Monday) by blocking the roads in an attempt to disrupt the activities of persons going about their lawful business. Adequate support was put in place in the area, and I understand that things are returning to normal, but they are still very alert, bearing in mind the threats that have been issued," Lindsay said.

The matter is currently being investigated by the Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM). Yesterday, commissioner of INDECOM, Terrence Williams, and his team toured Mount Salem as well as the area in Granville where the killing took place.




"What we did was meet with the JCF's ground commander and then we independently toured the community. We observed some of the police activities and we spoke to some of the members of the community. We handed out INDECOM telephone information, so if they have complaints, they could call us. They said they have no complaints of misconduct so far. I must say that they expressed some satisfaction for the presence of the security forces, although it restricted their movements somewhat," Williams told The Gleaner yesterday.

"If we have complaints emanating from Mount Salem, we will certainly return to investigate. Granville, though, we certainly will return to that area to do further investigations into that incident."