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Shooting ‘may be gang-linked revenge attack’

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A shooting in Pembroke on Monday night could be a gang-related revenge attack and is being treated as attempted murder, the Bermuda Police Service has revealed.

However, the 34-year-old victim, who is expected to make a full recovery, is not known to officers and is not believed to have any gang affiliations.

Saying it was “critical” that anyone with information come forward, Michael Dunkley, the Premier, said last night: “Witnesses make a difference in solving crime. If you know something, say something.”

Acting Inspector Jason Smith said the attack near St Monica's Road, in which a motorcycle was used, could be “a gang-related shooting in retaliation to a previous incident”.

The victim was found collapsed at the junction of Bishop Spencer Road and Palmetto Road after fleeing his assailant shortly after 10pm. He was treated for injuries to his lower body.

While saying residents should not fear random attacks, Mr Smith conceded that there had been a recent increase in feuds.

“We know from experience that these things tend to rise and fall,” he said.

Security cameras at St Monica's Road were operational, and officers are reviewing the footage. Calling the shooting the “act of unscrupulous, callous and cowardly men”, Mr Smith urged the community to help in “stemming this flow of gang violence and senseless shootings”.

It was the sixth shooting of the year, he noted, adding: “This is six times too many.”

People were in the area of St Monica's Road and roads close by at the time several shots rang out across the neighbourhood. Drivers were also passing on Palmetto Road, he said.

Witnesses or persons with “any information, however insignificant” are asked to contact the authorities. Any information “will be treated in strict confidence”.

Walter Roban, the MP for the area and the Shadow Minister of Home Affairs, expressed concern at the apparent “escalation of violent crime”.

He added: “Once again the peace of Bermuda's holiday period has been shattered by an intolerable act of violence. The PLP is angered and saddened by the latest in what appears to be an escalation of violent criminal activity. Our prayers go out for the victim, their friends, family and loved ones.

“As the Member of Parliament for the area that includes St Monica's, I know the sensitivity and tragic history of gun violence in our community.

“Time after time we have seen our neighbours, our friends and our family members wounded or murdered in gun violence. Too many of our families have been devastated and we must find solutions to make our streets safer, our families stronger and our communities less divided.”

• Anyone with information should call the police on 247-1739, or the confidential Crime Stoppers hotline on 800-8477

Public plea: Acting Inspector Jason Smith yesterday urged the public to come forward with any information (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

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Published December 30, 2015 at 8:00 am (Updated December 30, 2015 at 8:51 am)

Shooting ‘may be gang-linked revenge attack’

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