Five arrested following AR-15 rifle seizure in Manchester
MANDEVILLE, Manchester – Police here say the seizure of an assault rifle and ammunition will dent criminal activities in this south-central parish even as there are concerns that lottery scamming may be fuelling the flow of illegal guns here.
Head of the Manchester police Superintendent Shane McCalla told the Jamaica Observer on Tuesday that the rifle was seized and five people arrested on Tuesday during an operation at a premises on the outskirts of Mandeville.
“A cordon and search operation carried out Tuesday morning commenced around 4:30 am in the Battersea/New Green area. An AR-15 along with a quantity of 5.56 rounds were seized during the search. Five persons have since been taken into custody for questioning,” he explained.
He said the assault rifle is the second firearm seized in the parish since the start of this year.
“Most of our robberies and the commissioning of other criminal activities, the firearm is the number one choice of weapon. The issue of lotto scamming, which is prevalent in certain communities in Manchester and the ill-gotten gains, put the [criminals] in a position to procure firearms and as such, removing this from the street may be us saving up to 10 lives or more,” he said.
McCalla said Manchester, which recorded a 33.6 reduction in major crimes, is not a safe haven for criminals.
“We will continue on the successful momentum from last year with the division being the number one in terms of reductions in all categories of major crimes out of the 19 divisions. This underscores the commitment of the team to continue to put in the work to make Manchester a safer place in 2024,” said McCalla.