THIS WEEK’S NEWS SUMMARY
COP AQUITTED IN SHOOTING CASE—1/28/2006
Special Constable Gary Nunes was quitted of manslaughter charges in the shooting death of 12-year-old Orane Williams. Nunes had only been on the police force for four months when the shooting happened. According to police reports, police were apprehending a robbery suspect in Kingston when gunshots were fired, one striking the young boy. Lawyers for the defense tried to persuade the jury with ballistics evidence, however Nunes testified the shooting was accidental. Williams was on his way home from school when the shooting occurred.
JAZZ FESTIVAL MAY FIND NEW HOME—1/29/2006
Walter Elmore, Executive Director of the AIR JAMAICA Jazz and Blues Festival, has threatened to move the annual event elsewhere if local hoteliers do not increase their support. Elmore stated Montego Bay hoteliers have not held their end of sponsorship agreements. According to Elmore, he only received 130 of the 250 rooms and US$6,000 of the US$50,000 cash agreed upon for sponsorship. This is the second time in nine years the festival has been moved from Montego Bay due to lack of local support. Five years ago, the festival was held in Ocho Rios. The festival is a US $2.5 million event for Jamaica’s tourism capital. It is also the biggest Jazz and Blues festival in the Caribbean.
SEAGA TAKES LIBEL CASE TO COUNCIL—1/31/2006
Former Opposition Leader, Edward Seaga, is challenging an earlier ruling by the Court of Appeal and taking it to the Untied Kingdom Privy Council. Leslie Harper, retired Commissioner of Police, filed a report in March 1996 accusing Seaga of defaming his character at a Jamaica Labour Party meeting. Harper was awarded $3.5 million; however the Court of Appeal lowered the amount to $1.5 million explaining the original settlement was excessive. Seaga will head to the United Kingdom to appeal the ruling he should have to pay Harper anything.
HOMICIDE RATE DOWN FOR JANUARY—2/1/2006
The number of murders is down by 23% for January 2006 as compared to the same time in 2005, according to Commissioner of Police, Lucius Thomas. There were 113 murders for the month, down 33 from this time last year. Major crimes also dropped by 11% over the same period. These numbers coincide with the Commissioner’s goal to reduce the overall homicide rate by 5% in 2006. This goal is part of the Murder Reduction Action Plan. Other initiatives for the plan include : establishing a JDF Crime Hotspot Secretariat, establishing a Kingston and St. Andrew Major Investigative Task Force, enhancing the role of the National Intelligence Bureau, improving police coordination with social partners, working to improve the efficiency of the criminal justice system, improving the use of forensics and training investigators.
BODY FOUND IN WELL—2/2/2006
The body of 27-year-old police constable Clayton Salmon was found in an abandoned well in the March Pen area of St. Catherine yesterday. Police reportedly received information leading them to the area know as Spanish Villa. Upon arrival they discovered the nude body in the abandoned well. The firearm Salmon was carrying is still missing. Salmon was a seven-year veteran of the Jamaica Constabulary Force, attached to the Hannah Town Police Station in Kingston.
EX-SOLDIER FOUND GUILTY—2/3/2006
Former Jamaica Defense Force corporal, Michael Williams was sentenced to 15 years in prison yesterday. Williams plead guilty to illegal possession of a firearm and four counts of wounding with intent. In December 2004, Williams went to his girlfriend’s house and shot it several times with a sub-machine gun injuring five people. According to reports, Williams was upset with girlfriend after she took another person to her company party.
WORTHY PARK TO INCREASE CANE PRODUCTION—2/3/2006
The Government and St. Catherine’s Worthy Park are working on a deal to increase the island’s sugar output. Agreement of the US$10 million investment would allow Worthy Park to buy land on Innswood Estate and expand their current sugar production. According to Worthy Park’s managing director, Peter McConnell, the funds will be acquired through a government loan. Worthy Park is one of the most efficient producers of sugar in Jamaica. Acquiring the new land would increase production to 38,000 tons of sugar cane each year, 15,000 tons more than currently produced.
MEN’S AND WOMEN’S VOLLEYBALL TEAM WIN—1/28/2006
The Vikings men’s team and women’s Venus All-Stars came out winners at the volleyball rally at C.G. Foster College last week. The Vikings came from a set down to defeat the University of the West Indies in the second and third sets, 25-18, 16-14. The Venus All-Stars also upset the favored University of the West Indies winning the first two sets 26-24 and 25-23. League play begins next Saturday. Teams will play the home-and-away format in best of five sets. Four new teams have joined the league: the Titans and Old Harbour United in the men’s league and Old Harbour and Jamaica Defense Force in the women’s league.
MANCHESTER GIRLS DOMINATE RACE—1/30/2006
Manchester High School girls took three top places in the girl’s Class Three and Four 200m events at the 5th annual Queen’s/Grace Jackson Track & Field Meet Saturday. Denesha Morris, Michelle Nunez and Leslie-Ann Mitchell took top honours in the Class Three race while Orenthia Bennett, Chevanese Pinnock and Shay-Ann Holness placed first, second and third in the Class Four race. Saturday’s wins follow wins at the Puma/JAAA Development Meet at Kirkvine two weeks ago.
WILLIAMS WINS IN GERMANY—1/31/2006
Chris Williams, Jamaica’s former World Champion silver medalist took first place in the 200m at the IAAF Karisruhe Indoor Permit Meet on Sunday. With a finish time of 20.96 seconds, Williams became the fifth fastest runner in that event this season, finishing ahead of Caribbean runners Dominic Demeritte and Michelle Freeman.
HARBOUR VEIW STILL ATOP FUTBALL STANDINGS—2/2/2006
Led by Kevin Lamey with two goals, Waterhouse won 2-0 over Boys’ Town Wednesday inching closer to league leader, Harbour View. Harbour View still maintains an eight-point lead over the Drewsland team. Lamey’s two goals pushed Waterhouse to 46 points and became his 14th and 15th goals of the season. Lamey has missed a number of matches this season, but has now become the league’s leading scorer.
The weekly news is compilation of new articles from top Caribbean and Jamaican news sources.