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Two men shot dead in West End

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Police investigate at the northern side of Fort Scaur, adjacent to Ely's Harbour (Photograph supplied)

Police are hunting the killers of two men shot dead early yesterday morning near Fort Scaur in Somerset.

Na’imah Astwood, the Acting Commissioner of Police, said the pair were found unresponsive on Somerset Road shortly after 6am.

Details were limited, she said, emphasising that “families are grieving”, while the investigation remained in its early stages.

Gunshot evidence was found at the scene, police said.

Ms Astwood said: “As the Acting Commissioner of Police, I am not only speaking to you as a law enforcement official but I am also speaking to you as a member of this close-knit community of Bermuda.

“I understand the fear and uncertainty that these incidents have brought upon all of us. Please know that the Bermuda Police Service are fully committed to thoroughly investigating and bringing clarity to the circumstances surrounding these incidents.

“I want to reassure you that we are working diligently to ensure the safety and security of our community. The wellbeing of each and every resident of Bermuda is of utmost importance to us and we are dedicated to provide you with the support and protection you rightfully deserve.”

Na’imah Astwood, the Acting Commissioner of Police, provides information about a deadly shooting in Sandys (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Ms Astwood also called on users of social media to act responsibly and with sensitivity, urging them to refrain from putting out misinformation.

“We must remember that premature speculation and misinformation can have serious consequences and hinder the efforts to provide the community with accurate information and a thorough investigation,” she said.

“To our Bermuda community, I urge you to remain strong and united. Let us lean on one another for support and comfort and understanding as we navigate through these difficult times.”

Area MP on tragedy in Sandys South

Jamahl Simmons, the Progressive Labour Party MP for Constituency 33, called for West End residents to comfort the loved ones of two men whose lives were claimed in Somerset.

“It is with a heavy heart that I address our community today regarding the tragic incident that occurred this morning at Fort Scaur,” Mr Simmons told The Royal Gazette last night.

“My deepest sympathies go out to the families and loved ones of the victims.”

Mr Simmons said he recognised that “no words can convey the sorrow and pain that such senseless violence brings to them or our community”.

“I urge everyone in Constituency 33 and throughout our community to come together in solidarity in support of the victims’ families and repudiation of this heinous act.

“I call on those who have information related to this incident to come forward and assist the Bermuda Police Service with their investigation.

“Your help is vital in bringing those responsible to justice.”

While the investigation was still early, Ms Astwood said that officers were “carrying out house-to-house inquiries and engaging with the community”.

Superintendent Sherwin Joseph said police received a 911 call at about 6.05am about two men found with injuries on the road.

“The two men were taken to King Edward VII Memorial Hospital for medical treatment.

“However, both men eventually succumbed to their injuries, which we suspect to be gunshot wounds,” he said.

He said officers on the scene found forensic evidence that suggested shots had been fired.

“Investigators commenced several actions and continue to pursue numerous lines of inquiry to help us understand exactly what has transpired.”

Superintendent Sherwin Joseph speaks out at a press conference on a fatal shooting in Sandys (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Mr Joseph also asked residents of the Fort Scaur Hill area with CCTV cameras to review their footage.

“You may have captured material, video, photographs, et cetera, that may be able to assist our investigation,” he said.

Ms Astwood added that because of the early hour of the incident, any information captured could be important.

“Normally at that time of the morning you would appreciate there is not a heavy traffic presence,” she said. “What I would say is to look at those cameras and if you see anything, even if you think it is immaterial, please contact the police.”

Mr Joseph urged anyone with information or who might have been in the area at around 6am to contact Detective Sergeant Anneka Donawa at 717-2250 or adonawa@bps.bm.

Members of the public can also talk with an officer they know and trust, submit information through the BPS Community Reporting Portal or by call Crime Stoppers anonymously on 800-8477.

Deputy police commissioner Antoine Daniels speaks about a double murder in Sandys (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Deputy police commissioner Antoine Daniels said that the police would be out in force up to and throughout the Cup Match period.

“Bermuda is navigating through an unprecedented and difficult period, having today experienced seven murders since Bermuda Day in a six-week period, yet we are only halfway through the second week of July,” he said.

“This violence has occurred at a time when we all should be turning to each other as opposed to against each other, which is a real concern to our island community.”

He said police would launch an operational response plan that included traffic checkpoints and the use of stop-and-search, as well as “increased patrols in affected neighbourhoods, particularly North East Hamilton, Friswells Hill and throughout Sandys.”

“I recognise that some will say the police response is reactionary as opposed to proactive,” he said. “Notwithstanding that, officers cannot be everywhere all the time, the BPS have placed a heavy emphasis in areas where the highest threat is likely to be.”

Mr Daniels said police had carried out several successful operations in recent months and seized six functioning firearms since December 2023.

He called on the public to be patient and set out early from their homes or from work to allow time for potential police stops.

“Some of these tactics will involve traffic checkpoints and the use of lawful powers of stop and search under Pace and the Criminal Code,” he said.

Mr Daniels added that teams would be dedicated to targeting those suspected of committing violence.

The incident shortly before sunrise yesterday brought a heavy police presence with medical technicians to the area. Traffic was diverted through Sound View Road and the Lantana cottage area.

The main road was reopened from 10.40am.

Police declined to provide further details on the incident last Sunday in which two adults and two children were found dead in an apartment at Friswells Hill in Pembroke.

Asked if that incident was now considered a murder, Ms Astwood said: “As we stated on Sunday, we are still in the early stages of the investigation and we have not ruled that yet.”

Jarion Richardson, the Leader of the Opposition, said last night that the One Bermuda Alliance would hold a press conference today to address “recent incidents on the island”.

David Burt, the Premier, announced that he would also host a press conference today, saying in a statement: “We are all hurting.

“These recent tragedies have struck families, friends, communities and the entire island.

“The grief can seem overwhelming, but we must continue to have hope and summon the strength to reach inside ourselves, supporting each other and those directly impacted by such devastating circumstances.”