Politicians sad after deadly Dover attack

Politicians sad after deadly Dover attack

'Babsy' rues murder of innocent people, including her cousin

Friday, December 13, 2019

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THE tears seemed set to flow at any minute as Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport Olivia “Babsy” Grange responded to questions from the media on Wednesday in her first public comments following the fatal shooting of her cousin and three others in Dover, St Catherine, on Tuesday night.

Those killed have been identified as the minister's 67-year-old cousin Gladstone “Bigga” Grange; 42-year-old Marcus Anthony Whyte; 46-year-old Dennis Pryce; and 42-year-old bartender Patricia King.

Five other people were injured in the attack, believed to have been carried out by gangsters from a community off Maxfield Avenue in the Corporate Area.

“Two family members of mine were actually shot, one killed,” said Grange.

“They were in the square where they always gather and play games… there is a bar and there is a shop, and the shooting was just random,” added Grange.

She noted that while the police are reporting that eight people were shot, four fatally and four taken to hospital, a ninth person was also shot but that person did not go to the hospital.

“It is really a sad day for all of us. It is a farming community and a community that is not occupied by gangs. The persons who became victims are innocent people, so it is really a very heartbreaking situation for us,” said Grange.

In the meantime, People's National Party (PNP) spokesman on national security Fitz Jackson has extended sympathy to the families of the four murder victims and the five wounded in the gun attack.

In a statement yesterday, Jackson said the nature of the attack had confounded all Jamaicans because, from all appearances, it was unprovoked, random and heartless.

“No one expects that the people of a small rural farming district, far from urban gang violence, would be shot and murdered in such a senseless fashion,” said Jackson.

He called on the Police High Command to move swiftly to pursue their investigation and “ensure apprehension of the perpetrators of this heinous crime, so they are brought to justice and receive the full provision of the law”.

According to Jackson, this crime, more than any other in recent times, has led to a serious increase in the fear factor among Jamaicans.

The PNP spokesman said the police must serve, protect and reassure in order to bring about calm and normality in the Dover community as quickly as possible.

Police investigators have theorised that the killings were an extension of a Corporate Area gang feud with some of the major players either seeking refuge or having family members in Dover, which is metres from Kitson Town in St Catherine West Central.

— Arthur Hall

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