Regional

Two guards shot dead, another injured

Annotto Bay residents concerned about fatal shootings in community

BY RENAE DIXON
Observer staff reporter
dixonr@jamaicaobserver.com

Saturday, December 09, 2017



ANNOTTO BAY, St Mary — This rural town was very busy when the Jamaica Observer visited yesterday, which was expected as it was a regular day for shopping, more so with Christmas approaching.

However, while some went about their regular business, some residents were concerned that killings have become so frequent in the town that they have now become accepted among some residents.

The latest concerns followed the early-morning killing yesterday of two security guards at a D&G outlet in the town, in what residents claimed was an attempted robbery.

Dead are 52-year-old Vincent Walsh of Crooked River in Annotto Bay, and 40-year-old Cleve Grant of Buff Bay, Portland. A third security guard was also injured and has been hospitalised.

“Right now this happen and it is like nothing happen,” one resident said, stating that he believes the community should have been under curfew with members of the army and police force.

“People start get use to it; it is like nothing. Right now dem just a wonder a who next,” the resident stated.

“It normal now fi people dead a Annotto Bay,” the man said. Residents, he added, no longer hide in fear, but wait to hear who the next victim is.

In the meantime, residents of Crooked River remembered Walsh as a hard-working man.

“From him yard to work and even when him deh home he always find something to do,” a neighbour stated.

“A no miserable man. Is a cool bredda,” another resident stated.

One man who said he had worked with both guards for years said they were hard-working family men.

“The man dem dead gone leave dem pickney,” he said. Walsh is said to be the father of at least six children, while Grant is believed to have fathered three.

“Annotto Bay a wicked place,” the man continued. He said the number of murders in the small town are there to prove this.

Crooked River resident Richard Bignold, 45, was last month reportedly chased and shot by a gunman while on his way home from work. And in August three residents from the community were shot and killed.

Residents said they are concerned, especially about Fort George Road, a section of the community where several incidents of triple or double murders have taken place.

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