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Shooting victim recovering in hospital as police appeal for witnesses

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Witness appeal: Detective Sergeant Jason Smith (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

A 22-year-old Pembroke man shot several times yesterday in Somers Gardens in St George's is recovering in hospital.

Detective Sergeant Jason Smith of the serious crime unit said two suspects are believed to have ridden to the scene on a motorcycle from the direction of the Unfinished Church nearby on Government Hill Road.

He added: “They rode down towards Somers Supermarket, where they made a left turn and the suspect jumped off the back of the bike.”

Shortly before 2.50pm, the suspected gunman jumped over the park wall adjoining York Street, confronted the victim sitting on a park bench, and shot him "multiple times".

The suspect fled over the same wall and boarded the waiting motorcycle, which left the scene in the same direction.

Police on Tuesday believed the suspects had fled in the direction of Paynters Road in Hamilton Parish, but Mr Smith said that route was “not a specific feature” of the investigation at this point.

He added: “The suspects came from the area of the Unfinished Church and went back towards that location.

“Of course, there could be other areas that the bike fled after the shooting.”

Mr Smith said the victim, who was known to police, had been working by Somers Gardens for much of the day.

The attack continues to be treated as gang-related.

Mr Smith said: "We believe there may have been members of the community that saw certain activity prior to the shooting.“

Police have appealed for residential camera footage.

Mr Smith noted that CCTV was assisting, as well as forensic evidence taken from "several areas" of the park.

The passenger of the motorcycle wore a black helmet with a dark visor, a dark hooded jacket and white sneakers.

The rider wore all black including black gloves.

Renée Ming, the national security minister, said the attack “breaks my heart” and offered sympathy to the victim’s family.

Ms Ming said her home was up the hill from the scene of the attack.

“We’re in a precarious point right now as a country, navigating the pandemic,” she said. “Any antisocial behaviour at this time – we don’t need it.”

She added: “We are all in this together. We have to get through this.

“If you were down here and even saw something you might not think relevant or important, dial 211.”

Ms Ming implored the community to “stand up and do something about it”.

Anyone with potential information can also call the main police number, 295-0011, or the confidential Crime Stoppers hotline at 800-8477.

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Published March 31, 2021 at 5:36 pm (Updated March 31, 2021 at 5:36 pm)

Shooting victim recovering in hospital as police appeal for witnesses

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