The Jamaica Constabulary Force, JCF, says crimes in Portland so far this year had no political undertones or connections.
The JCF released a statement today, two weeks after the PNP’s candidate-elect for West Portland, Valerie Neita Robertson, said she observed a “worrying trend” that places were targeted for violence shortly after she and her team left.
In today’s statement, the JCF says it’s clarifying the attribution of major crimes reported in Portland since the start of the year, following pronouncements made on social media about incidents in the parish.
The JCF says since January, 12 murders and five shootings have been reported in the parish, none of which have been politically related.
The Police say an increase in the migration of displaced criminal suspects, and domestic and rival gang conflicts, has led to heightened operations by the Portland police to maintain law and order.
In one particular incident, the Police say their vigilance to detect and deter displaced criminal suspects resulted in eight men from Denham Town, Kingston being picked up and processed in Orange Bay, Portland on August 15.
The JCF says it was later determined that the men were not wanted and were subsequently released.
The Police say they also remain alert to instances of domestic and rival gang conflicts and continue to implement measures to cauterise such occurrences.
In one such incident on August 18, two men were shot and injured by armed men on foot in the Buff Bay area of Portland.
The investigators theorise that the shooting emanated from a long-standing conflict over the control of turf between rival factions within the community.
The Police say they’re also investigating several leads, including threats of a domestic nature which were made against Stacey-Ann Wellington who was shot dead by an unknown assailant on October 14 at Olivier Street, Buff Bay.
The Police say several statements have been collected on this matter, and investigators continue to probe.
The Police are appealing to citizens to play their part by providing information on criminal incidents by calling Crime Stop at 311, the 119 emergency number or 811.