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Crackdown in Annotto Bay

Observer staff reporter

Thursday, June 21, 2018

SUPERINTENDENT of police in charge of St Mary Bobbette Morgan yesterday termed Annotto Bay, the “Achilles heel” of St Mary, pointing to an increase in murders that have now disrupted the tranquillity for which the rural parish is known.

Morgan told the Jamaica Observer during an interview in the parish that a curfew imposed around 6:00 am yesterday is expected to weed out criminal elements, some of whom migrated to the parish.

The curfew is expected to end on Friday, but could continue well beyond that time if the Jamaica Constabulary Force's hierarchy remains dissatisfied with activities there.

“We have been having issues with Annotto Bay. There's a long-standing situation and in recent times we've had a number of murders and shootings being perpetrated in this space so we have to put a lid on what is going on. It's a means of weeding out the criminals. The general aim is to get the criminals out,” Morgan said.

Already, she noted that several men wanted for various crimes have been arrested, while others have been detained for questioning.

The usually busy streets of the town were yesterday flooded with police and soldiers, who carried out spot checks during the day. Metal barriers blocked both the entrance and exit to the town as all public passenger vehicles and some private vehicles were searched on approaching or exiting the town.

Morgan said the aim is to catch those with outstanding warrants as well as to discover illegal firearms.

“We will catch them as we know the guns are here. Already, we've made a number of arrests. We have pooled resources [with the army], so we will be on the ground searching for the criminals and making arrests and not only that, but to arrest the level of violence here, the shootings and murders,” she said.

“We have had persons picked up in the space that are wanted elsewhere. So we will make the arrests,” she added.