WESTMORELAND, Jamaica — A 17-year-old boy was shot dead in a yard on Ricketts Avenue, in Savanna-La-Mar, Westmoreland on Thursday morning.
The deceased has been identified as Jayre Francis, otherwise called ‘Jay’, of a Ricketts Street address.
Ricketts Avenue is a part of the Zone of Special Operations in Savanna-La-Mar.
In January of this year, Prime Minister Andrew Holness declared a Zone of Special Operations in Savanna-la-Mar South to cover the communities of Russia, Dalling Street and Dexter Street.
In his declaration, Holness stated that “…these areas have been captured by gangs and are currently in the grips of terror”.
A resident, who did not want to be identified, told OBSERVER ONLINE that she was awoken by the sounds of gunshots minutes after 3:00 am and later heard that a man died in the community.
The yard the deceased was found in, the resident said, is often used by persons as a “shortcut” to enter another community.
Reports from the police are that residents heard explosions at about 3:00 am and Francis’ body was later found at 5:20 am with multiple gunshot wounds to his head and body. He also had lacerations to his neck.
Francis was taken to the Savanna-La-Mar Public General Hospital where he was pronounced dead.