The police are urging citizens to desist from taking the law into their own hands by participating in mob killings.
The plea follows Monday’s chopping death of two alleged praedial thieves by an angry mob in Gibraltar, St Ann.
The victims have since been identified as 28-year-old Demar Rose, a construction worker of Hague, Falmouth, and 46-year-old O’Neil Robinson, a taxi operator of Martha Brae, both in Trelawny.
In commenting on similar incidents at a police media briefing on Tuesday, head of the Constabulary’s crime and security portfolio, Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) Fitz Bailey, said while he sympathises with people when they lose their animals, there are times when innocent persons can be killed during mob attacks.
DCP Fitz Bailey (File photo)
“Whilst we understand that citizens can become frustrated, especially when cattle are stolen… we want to appeal to the citizens not to take the law into their own hands,” said Bailey.
He pointed to one instance some years ago in St Catherine, in which a taxi driver drove into a lane, and “he was actually mobbed because he was viewed by the public that he was involved in cattle stealing.”
The deputy commissioner shared that a tyre was placed around the man’s neck and he was burnt to death.
Bailey said there were at least three mob killings in recent days.
“We want to again appeal to the public not to take the law into their own hands, and this is adding to our murders.
“For the past week, we have had at least three of those instances. So again, we appeal to the public to demonstrate some tolerance, and allow the law enforcement agencies to deal with those issues,” the senior lawman appealed.
In the latest incident on Monday, about 9:30 am, residents saw two men travelling in a Toyota Voxy motor vehicle with several carcasses of cattle and goats.
Residents blocked a section of the main road in the community, but the men’s accomplices, who were armed and travelling in another vehicle, reportedly fled the area.
The Voxy, with Robinson and Rose on board, developed mechanical issues at a section of the road.
They attempted to flee the area on foot but were allegedly attacked and chopped to death by residents.
The St Ann police, in condemning the mob attack, have vowed to lay charges on those involved in the incident.