Sat | Dec 3, 2022

Attackers kill man in front of cops

Tensions resurface in central Kingston

Published:Tuesday | September 20, 2022 | 12:10 AMAndre Williams/Staff Reporter
Police patrolling James Street in central Kingston Monday moments after two masked attackers shot two men, one fatally.
Police patrolling James Street in central Kingston Monday moments after two masked attackers shot two men, one fatally.

Fresh fears now exist in central Kingston following a daring attack in which masked men travelling on foot opened fire at a group of people, killing one man, in full view of a team of police officers sitting in a service vehicle. The man killed in...

Fresh fears now exist in central Kingston following a daring attack in which masked men travelling on foot opened fire at a group of people, killing one man, in full view of a team of police officers sitting in a service vehicle.

The man killed in the Monday afternoon attack was still unidentified up to press time last night, while a second victim, also a male, remained hospitalised in critical condition.

The incident, which occurred about 4 p.m. on James Street, has caused residents to be cowering in fear, dreading another explosion of gang warfare between the two most notorious factions in the space, Darksyde and Genasyde.

Residents are pointing fingers at the Darksyde faction after the latest shooting, which was reportedly captured on surveillance camera.

“Mi think this did done. Mi a say to somebody yesterday say a three or four weeks now no shot nuh fire and everybody a hold dem own. Mi talk too soon,” one female resident said, minutes before news came that one of the victims had died.

Residents expressed alarm that the presence of the police service vehicle that is always parked on James Street was no deterrent to the brazen criminals.

“The police dem turn fool. The man dem come out the yard and shoot up the man dem and go up James Street. The police dem a try turn the car before dem go pon foot and challenge the man dem. From the first three shot dem fire, di police dem see wah gwan,” a resident said.

The Gleaner understands that the target of the attack, one half of a pair of twins, had just returned to the community after leaving for rural Jamaica when the war was raging.

“Him never deh here and him just come back because the youth dem a pree different thing. Everything weh gwan the police dem ever a take set pon him, so him just breeze the place. A somebody call and say him deh pon di lane. A now things a go start again,” another resident said.

The residents said they were no longer safe even in their yards, but the police are pointing out that the residents are not cooperating with investigators.

One man at the scene complained of feeling ill and said he narrowly escaped the deadly assault after he left the gathering to get some home remedy.

“A mi yard mi go and hear di whole heap of gunshot dem and come look see two man a ground,” he told The Gleaner.

The Parade Gardens section of Central Kingston was declared a zone of special operations in January.

Residents have been calling for the security measure to be extended to Rose Gardens, more popularly known as Spoilers.

The latest major crime statistics released by the police show that murders in the division have declined by 37 per cent year-on-year.

Up to September 17, the division recorded 33 homicides or 19 fewer than the 52 persons killed in the corresponding period in 2021. Other major crimes – such as shootings, injured persons, rape and break-ins – have also declined.

Meanwhile, murders nationally have increased year-on-year by eight per cent with 1,108 people killed up to Saturday, September 17.

andre.williams@gleanerjm.com