Community in shock as 24-y-o suspected of slaying parents in grisly attack
When crashing sounds jolted some residents of Christian Meadows in Portmore, St Catherine, out of their sleep about 4:30 yesterday morning, they could not fathom the ghastly reality which would greet them after two members of their community were slaughtered in the dead of night, allegedly at the hands of their 24-year-old son.
Fifty-five-year-old minister of religion Cecil Ramsay and his 55-year-old wife, Phyllis, the acting vice-principal at St Andrew Preparatory School, were both laying dead inside their blood-soaked Antaris Avenue family home.
“I’m very surprised. It shock the whole community … ,” said one resident as shocked community members gathered outside the home, trying to make sense of the macabre killing.
“When I looked on the phone it was 4:38 a.m. He (suspect) is the one that drove and crashed in the gate and he is not a driver. Him crash around there and root out a tree then drove to Phoenix scheme, where he crashed again,” the woman said.
The police report that they received a call and went to Phoenix Park in Dunbeholden in Portmore and spoke with security guards about a Toyota Axio motor car registered to Phyllis that was abandoned in the community.
Bloodstains were observed inside upon closer examination and the couple’s son, who is suspected to have committed the act, was later apprehended after being found wandering inside the community.
According to the police, during an initial interview, he admitted that he had stabbed and killed his parents.
He was then escorted to the home, where the bodies of his parents and the suspected murder weapon were found inside.
Christian Meadows Citizens’ Association President Sonia Morgan, an immediate neighbour to the Ramsays, said that she had been observing what she now deemed to be unusual behaviour in the suspect from as far back as September last year, when he began to withdraw himself.
“He withdrew from social media completely, put down his smartphone and bought a ‘bangers’, so that it would be just communication and contact with his family. He would exercise by running around the block with other young people, such as my son and my cousin, and he stopped,” Morgan said.
“He is a G.C. Foster College student, nearing final year, doing very well – very popular on campus,” she added, noting that in the community setting, he was “not a loud, here, there and everywhere person”.
Describing the young man as the baby of the Ramsay family – warm, soft and loved by all – Morgan said that she knew he was a teaching assistant. She was, however, unsure whether he was still teaching.
“He withdrew then he started to speak strangely like he doesn’t have to study to pass exams anymore, [saying] the Lord will just let the information come to him and that type of thing,” she said.
“You hear these things on the news and you hear people saying, ‘I don’t understand. He was decent boy, and people would get sceptical and say, yeah, man. Always a decent boy’, but in this case, he was,” Morgan said.
Another resident told The Gleaner that the Ramsays were very close knit and insular as a family.
“But we understand because it was the parents who are like that and made their children like that. They don’t go to the gate and stand up and talk to people. They don’t go over to people house … ,” the resident said.
When our news team visited the St Andrew Preparatory School yesterday afternoon, the administrative staff was receiving grief counselling.
“We are just now in a session with the chaplain. I wouldn’t be able to pull the principal out,” a teary-eyed staff member said.
The school’s security guard was also feeling down.
“Mi nuh think dem can talk ya now,” she said. “Mi weak like a rat.”
Up to late last night, the suspect, who remained in custody, had not yet been charged.