Murders shoot past 200

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Murders shoot past 200

Emergency measures cool rural hot spots but Corporate Area killings climb

BY ARTHUR HALL
Editor-at-Large
halla@jamaicaobserver.com

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

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WITH 55 days gone in the year, Jamaica's murder total has shot past the 200 mark at a rate of just under four killings each day.

Official crime statistics from the police show 198 murders across the island up to last Saturday, which is 10 per cent above the 180 recorded for the same period last year. However, four more killings on Sunday pushed the tally past 200 as the orgy of violence continued.

Kingston, St Andrew and St Catherine account for the majority of the murders — 127 — a 38 per cent increase over last year, while murders are down 19 per cent in rural Jamaica.

Among those killed Sunday was 61-year-old Mazie-Lyn Bailey, who was stabbed in Alexandria, St Ann. Up to late yesterday the police had not released a motive for her killing or said whether a suspect had been identified.

The others killed on Sunday include a man who had not identified up to press time yesterday, and Andre “Boysie” Shaw. The unidentified man was shot dead on Hunt's Bay Lane, while Shaw was shot in an area known as Mongoose Town”, both of which are in the St Andrew South Police Division where a state of emergency is in effect.

The first victim of gunmen on Sunday was 43-year-old Adon Robinson, who was killed as he tried to escape from two men on bicycles who had chased him into a yard on West Street in downtown Kingston and shot him multiple times.

One-year-old Mia Dailey, who was in the yard, was shot in the abdomen during the attack on Robinson. She remained in hospital in serious condition up to late yesterday.

That attack is believed to have sparked a reprisal shooting on the nearby Albert Street in Denham Town, which left two men nursing gunshot wounds about 7:30 Sunday evening.

According to reports, a group of people was standing on Albert Street when men travelling in a motor car opened gunfire at them.

When the shooting ended it was found that a 26-year-old shopkeeper and a 24-year-old market vendor had been wounded. The two men, whose names are being withheld, were hospitalised.

The shooting of the two men in Denham Town on Sunday came hours before two men cheated death in Salt Spring, St James, when they were shot by unknown assailants. Despite the recent incidents, the number of shootings so far this year is still tracking below that of the same period in 2019.

The official data show 178 shootings islandwide up to last Saturday, a six per cent decline over last year.

Other major crimes, including rape and robberies, are also down this year when compared to 2019.

Just under 60 cases of rape have been reported to the police so far this year, a 34 per cent reduction when compared to last year, while 154 robberies have been reported, which is 22 per cent below 2019.

In the meantime, the police continue to grapple with the theft of motor vehicles as 92 have been stolen so far this year. This includes 62 cars, six trucks and 18 bikes. Over the corresponding period last year 107 motor vehicles had been reported stolen.


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