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Weekend shooting victim in intensive care

A shooting over the weekend is a reminder “that we all must remain vigilant in ridding our community of the scourge of violence”, the national security minister said yesterday.

Two men were shot at the close of the holiday weekend, with a 24-year-old hit in the chest and another man, 31, injured in the hand.

Gunshots were reported shortly before 11.15pm on Sunday in the Caroline Bay, George’s Bay Road area of Sandys.

As of 5pm yesterday, the younger victim remained in the intensive care unit at King Edward VII Memorial Hospital.

The other victim was treated for his wounds and discharged.

Police said several boats were unloading passengers at the Caroline Bay Marina, with some potentially witnessing the incident.

They appealed for any boat owners whose vessels were moored at the marina and had security cameras to check the devices for activity recorded between 10.30pm and 11.30pm on Sunday.

Anyone with potential information should contact Detective Inspector Jason Smith, of the serious crime unit, at 717-0864 or by e-mail at jsmith2@bps.bm.

A quantity of spent shells has been recovered from the scene.

Mr Smith said: “From our lines of inquiry, we believe they [the suspects] came on a motorbike and left on a motorbike.”

He said there appeared to be two people on board the bike but that it was too early to say if it was gang-related.

As well as contacting Mr Smith, anyone with information is asked to use the police service’s community reporting portal online, or the independent and confidential Crime Stoppers number, 800-8477.

Michael Weeks, the Minister of National Security, said he was deeply concerned about shooting incidents.

“They are a reminder that we all must remain vigilant in ridding our community of the scourge of violence.

“The Bermuda Police Service are fully engaged in the investigation and I encourage anyone with information that would help the police to bring to justice the culprits in this incident to provide that information.”

Michael Dunkley, the Shadow Minister of National Security, called it “very disturbing” that the Cup Match holiday weekend ended with gun violence in which two people were wounded.

“I suggest there are people who can help the police bring the culprits to justice,” he said.

“Information needs to be provided to assist the police or we risk the possibility of the guilty getting away and increase the possibility of more violence.

“I note the shooting took place on property that is controlled by government-appointed liquidators. The Government must look into how the area and facility close to where the shootings occurred is being managed.”

He added: “It is totally unacceptable that another incident of gun violence has occurred and we as a community must not turn a blind eye or sweep it under the carpet.

“With responsibility comes accountability and the Opposition looks forward to learning the Government's response to this matter.”

Community activist Gina Spence, who has extensive counselling experience in connection with gun crime, told The Royal Gazette: “It’s a privilege to sit in people’s grief space, which is a very intimate and difficult one and a place that many people are in alone.

“The entire experience of having someone shot is a very hard space to be in and when people allow you to come into that space as an adult, it’s a privilege.

“We are concerned about what has happened and continues to happen in the community as a result of gang violence.“

She said she was “sad that another family have been affected by this behaviour and prayerful that they do not have to call us” should the victim lose his life.