LESS than 24 hours after the nation was rocked by the gruesome slaying of 14-year-old Shariefa Saddler, Jamaicans yesterday woke up to the macabre murder of another child — this time a five-year-old.
Residents of Allman Town said Rushane 'Ricardo' Burford was at home with his grandmother, preparing to go to school, when about 7:00 am his life was cut short by a cruel, callous gunman in a fit of anger.
"The man and the family members were in an argument and all we see is the man just go weh and come back and start fire shots at the family members," said one distraught resident.
"The youth come and turn the gun on the family members, and when him couldn't get to catch any of them him hear the baby a scream under the bed and just turn the gun under there and shoot the child," one woman said, standing metres away from the boy's lifeless body on the road.
The Jamaica Observer was unable to determine how Rushane's body ended up on the street. Family members said he was shot in his eye and back.
His grandmother was also shot and injured and up to last night was still in hospital.
A young boy, dressed in khaki, turned his face away as he glimpsed the body of the child from behind the police yellow tape.
"Me can't believe it. How can a man do this to a child?" said one man. "The baby was getting ready to go school."
Yesterday, as angry residents called on the police to leave no stone unturned in bringing the shooter to justice, the police high command said it was seeking Marlon McMillian, also called 'Truthy' and 'Shooty', in relation to the shooting death.
Police Commissioner Owen Ellington, during a press conference yesterday, assured that the police would be intensifying their search for the killer.
He also said the police would be going after the killers of 14-year-old Shariefa Saddler.
The slender, badly bruised body of the Haile Selassie High School student, who lived at Joshua Edwards Avenue in Olympic Gardens, was dumped on Lothian Avenue — which is near to her home — by men in a motor car shortly after 11:00 am Wednesday.
Yesterday, counsellors and representatives from the Ministry of Education visited Haile Selassie High to provide counselling to students and teachers, Principal Lorenzo Ellis told the Observer.