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Four buildings burnt in 48 hours as violence rocks Harbour View

Police promise to protect citizens

BY HG HELPS Editor-at-Large helpsh@jamaicaobserver.com

Monday, January 27, 2014    

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CRIMINAL activities that have engulfed sections of Bay Shore in the East Rural St Andrew community of Harbour View recently, continue to make life miserable for residents following the torching of four buildings, including these three houses between Thursday and Saturday of last week.

The latest incidents preceded yesterday's Sunday Observer report which highlighted the underworld activities of gangsters in the area, among them the murder of citizens and burial of their bodies on the banks of the Hope River, an act that has been going on for several years, according to a former gangster close to the crimes.

Police confirmed that a feud between rival gang members in the area had resulted in four buildings along Everest Drive being burnt.

Residents also told the Jamaica Observer that gunmen had fired shots at each other, and had even shot at the police when the law enforcers attempted to intervene.

Superintendent of Police in charge of East Kingston Arthur Brown said that there was no shoot-out between the police and gunmen, but confirmed that the four structures were set ablaze arising from disagreements between the gangs.

"It stems from a feud between two gangs," Brown stated. "One man's house was burnt last Thursday night and in retaliation, two houses were set afire Friday night, apparently by those aligned to the rival gang of that which allegedly set the first fire.

"Another premises was burnt last night (Saturday) around 9:30. We now have a heavy police presence there and we are assuring the people of the area that we will do everything to guarantee their safety," Brown said.

The area remained tense yesterday, although police personnel were noticably roaming the mainly affected road and others nearby.

"Things a get real bad now, man. We need fi get rid a them gang bway ya," one resident told the Observer by telephone yesterday.

"Harbour View was such a peaceful place, and all of a sudden this killing, robbing and shooting start up over the last few years. It look like is really God a come fi him world again," the resident said.

The individual insisted that the sound of explosions had punctuated the air over the past four days, as the gangsters fight over turf and drug money.

The Sunday Observer reported that a mass burial site exists in the area, with an informant claiming that several people were killed and dumped there by gangsters.

There has been an ongoing feud between gangsters in the Bay Shore area, as youth from the former 'Mad Ants Crew' and others have been at odds. The mix is said to include businessmen and an individual with strong political ties, who have facilitated the carnage in exchange for lofty remuneration in cash and kind.

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