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Woman beaten, robbed, raped in Kingston

Woman begs for assistance to turn her life around

BY KARYL WALKER Editor — Crime/court desk walkerk@jamaicaobserver.com

Sunday, June 09, 2013    

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LIFE has dealt 28-year-old Simone Edwards a cruel blow.

After being homeless for the past three years, she has been raped, beaten, robbed and mistreated on the streets of downtown Kingston.

The result of her repeated rapes is a two-year-old son, who was taken away from her by agents of the state who rescued the infant from life on the streets in his mother's arms.

"The Child Development Agency took the baby and tell me that I can't care for him while I live on the street. The baby is now two and them have him at Glenhope (Place of Safety). I still try and look for him every day," she said.

Edwards has long passed breaking point and is now begging desperately for help to get off the cruel streets of the capital city and make an attempt to turn her life around.

"Me a beg some help please. I can't live on the streets, life is very rough and dangerous out there. Them rape me more than one time. Some man beat me up for me little food. Nobody no sorry fi you and me lucky me still alive," she said.

The woman speaks with a slur and appears to have physical and mental challenges. Her eyes constantly 'run water' which do not appear to be tears.

Edwards claims she was forced out on the street by uncaring relatives three years ago from a community in Central Kingston.

"My auntie just put me out one day and my cousin just don't like me. I don't do them anything but from that I am sleeping and living on the street," she said.

Edwards told the Jamaica Observer that she sleeps in the St William Grant Park at night and begs for food during the days.

Sometimes when a kind member of the public shows her some sympathy and gives her scraps, she has been very careful that other homeless people who are stronger than her do not bully her and steal the few morsels.

"I don't remember what it feels like to sleep with a sheet at night time. People can't live on the street sir," she said.

She said that her attempts to seek help from the various charity organisations located in the capital's commercial centre have all been futile.

"Them say them can't take me. I don't know why," Edwards stated.

She said that her hangout spot during the days is on upper King Street close to a fast-food establishment facing the statue of National Hero Sir Alexander Bustamante.

"Is there me call home now. I have nowhere to go. At night time me have to be very careful because some dirty men are out there and them come and do with me as them please and if me complain them say them will kill me, so me must just open up and take the work," she said.

But despite all her travails, Edwards still finds time to love her only child.

"Even though I don't know him father I love that child very much. I go and look for him every day at the children home. Him must know say is me is him mother," she said.

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