Wed | Dec 2, 2020

Maxfield murders - Families left broken after three killed, one injured as guns bark in nearby communities

Published:Friday | February 14, 2020 | 12:29 AMAndre Williams/Staff Reporter - -

From the veranda of his home in Rome, located off Maxfield Avenue, a frail looking Kenyatta Thomas Sr sat in anguish, trying to come to terms with the death of his only child with whom he shared a name and a birthday.

Thomas Sr, 65, could hardly speak and cried uncontrollably as he remembered his 38-year-old son, Kenyatta Thomas Jr, who was murdered in his yard at 7 ¼ Kew Road.

Reports are that the younger Thomas was killed about 12:45 a.m. Wednesday by unknown assailants who it appears were in his yard awaiting his arrival.

The elder Thomas said he was awakened by loud explosions at his doorstep and, when he made checks, saw his son lying in his own blood.

Thomas Sr, who uses a walker for assistance, said he fell to the floor instantly.

“He was coming from McDonald Lane at his friend’s bar and police run dem off the road. A good boy, enuh. If him did thief or a wrongdoer, mi wouldn’t feel it that way. A me and him alone live and the two of us born September 1,” the distraught father said as he wiped away tears.

A resident told The Gleaner that she heard four explosions which sounded like someone was hit.

She told The Gleaner: “A badmind thing. His mother bought him a car recently and took him off his feet.”

Thomas Jr was one of three persons who died between Wednesday night and Thursday morning from gunshot wounds.

The incidents occurred in the vicinities of at least three zones of special operations (ZOSO) checkpoints.

A female shopkeeper was also struck by a bullet in one of the incidents which occurred at Anderson Road.

The target in that shooting is believed to have been 25-year-old Romeo Phong.

Reports reaching The Gleaner are that Phong went to purchase bread at 17 Anderson Road when he was attacked by gunmen who shot him several times.

The shopkeeper was also shot in her arm.

Phong ran from his attackers over to Dillion Avenue, where he was shot dead after a chase.

When The Gleaner visited the community, the shopkeeper’s son told The Gleaner that his mother was recovering in hospital.

Phong’s in-law said: “He is not from here. Him nuh really talk to people other than family and friends.”

The third deceased remains unidentified.

His body was found at 70 Maxfield Avenue with his hands bound and his mouth stuffed.

Police reports are that he was shot several times.

The incidents follow the shooting death of a man on Galloway Road on Tuesday night.

There was also a report of heavy gunfire along Maxfield Avenue on Wednesday night as more than 40 explosions were heard.

Yesterday the Jamaica Constabulary Force’s Corporate Communications Unit (CCU) told The Gleaner that investigations into the incidents, which occurred in the Kingston Central or St Andrew South divisions, are ongoing.

andre.williams@gleanerjm.com