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Cool it! — Police appeal to Zion residents

Police appeal to Zion residents after man killed, daughter injured and house set on fire

BY HORACE HINES Observer staff reporter hinesh@jamaicaobserver.com

Tuesday, September 25, 2012    

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ZION, Trelawny — The police last night pleaded with residents of Zion district, near Martha Brae in this parish, not to carry out any further act of vigilante justice or revenge in connection with the death of two boys from their community.

The appeal from the police came against Sunday night's hacking death of a man and the injury of his 18-year-old daughter by a group of men who also fire-bombed the house they occupied. This after alleging that the deceased, Donovan Hazley, also called 'Abbra' knew about the death of the two boys.

The police, in their appeal yesterday, said a post-mortem report showed that the boys — Alex Brown, 10, and seven-year-old Javani Brown — died from drowning. The were found floating in the Martha Brae River last Thursday, five days after they were reported missing.

Yesterday, head of the Police Area One, Assistant Commissioner of Police Devon Watkis, assured residents that the constabulary would be handling the situation and encouraged them not to take the law into their own hands.

The police said that following discussions with the pathologist, crime officer for area one, Acting Senior Superintendent Derrick Champagnie, has been assigned to head a team that will be conducting more in-depth investigations into the matter.

In the meantime, the police said five were yesterday taken into custody in connection with Sunday night's hacking to death of Hazley and the injury of his daughter.

"During an operation, persons were taken into custody and we are now questioning them," Acting Commander of the Trelawny Police Division Errol Thompson told the Jamaica Observer.

Irate Zion residents last week accused a man from the community of abducting, sodomising and killing the boys then dumping their bodies into the river.

DSP Thompson said he could not confirm if there was any link between both incidents.

Claudette Hazley, widow of the deceased, said the attack which lead to the death of her husband and the injury of her daughter was a result of persons wrongfully accusing her son — who lives at a nearby housing scheme — of sexually molesting the two boys before killing them.

"Dem have a fool-fool, idiot argument the other day about who a dis and who a that, and dem lose two little pickney and dem say a my son take away dem pickney and go do what with dem pickney. Mi son ah no dem type a person deh fi go do dem kind a thing deh," the distressed woman said.

She reported that she was along with her three children who were in the house when it was torched and managed to escape unhurt. But now they have nowhere to go as the house was razed.

"Mi no safe. Mi don't have nowhere to go. Mi leave in the desolate sea right now; everything fi me burn up. No money, mi don't have nothing at all. Nothing at all, everything me possess and have dem burn it up. Maybe if mi never run mi would be dead too," the widow said.

She recalled that Sunday night her husband and three children were in their beds, while she was alone watching television sitting in the living room when she heard explosions.

Her husband was awakened and ran towards a back door to determine the source of the explosions while she hurried to protect the children.

Hazley said that her two daughters, 18 and 11 years, and her 15-year-old son ran from house which burst in flames. While they were running for safety, the 18-year-old daughter turned back to assist her father who was under attack by a group of unidentified machete wielders.

The attackers turned on the teenage girl, chopping her four times. Bleeding profusely, she managed to catch up with her mother and siblings and all ran into a nearby house.

Deputy Superintendent Kevin Haughton of the Falmouth Fire Brigade said one unit from his station responded to the call and carried out cooling down operations on the eight-apartment board structure which was gutted by the fire.

"One person, I was advised, suffered burns, but died as a result of chop wounds," Haughton said.

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