Mon | Oct 2, 2023

Triple murder brings chills back to Clarendon residents

Published:Monday | June 5, 2023 | 12:30 AMOlivia Brown/Gleaner Writer
Cecil Ricketts, shopkeeper
Cecil Ricketts, shopkeeper
Kevin Anderson
Kevin Anderson

A gruesome triple murder in the Grantham area of Frankfield in Clarendon on Friday night brought a chilling sense of déjà vu to residents in the central parish, having been racked by the gut-wrenching Cocoa Piece quintuple murder that saw the brutal, execution-style killing of a mother and her four children in June last year, and the vicious September 2021 quadruple murder that wiped out relatives of one family in Havannah Heights.

Stakeholders have expressed shock and horror over the latest incident which has disrupted what they say is a usually quiet community.

In the latest mass murder, 42-year-old Kevin Anderson, also known as ‘Styla’, a truck operator of Peckham district; Cecil Ricketts, also known as Parch, a shopkeeper of Grantham district; and 56-year-old farmer Delroy Facey, also known as ‘Skeng Don’ of Belmont district, Clarendon were gunned down at a community shop operated by Ricketts.

Reports are that, about 9:30 p.m., the men were at Ricketts’ shop when men with guns alighted from a motor vehicle and fired several shots.

The police were summoned, and, on arrival, all three men were found with multiple gunshot wounds over their bodies.

Facey was seen between the shop and the zinc fence, Anderson behind the counter, and Ricketts in a sitting position on Anderson’s back. The scene was processed and they were taken to the hospital where they were pronounced dead.

Video seen by The Gleaner shows a bloodied entrance to the shop, further revealing a blood-soaked body slumped over another.

The Gleaner understands that one of the deceased had an undetermined sum of money on his person at the time of the shooting. That money and his cell phone were reportedly missing from the scene.

Apparent reprisal

Police sources are theorising that the attack was a reprisal, stemming from a February 2022 murder of a farmer who was gunned down in the vicinity.

The sources say the farmer had a dispute with a relative of one the triple-murder victims, and that the relative had been named as a person of interest in his killing.

Stakeholders bemoaned Friday night’s incident as most unfortunate, adding that residents have been on tenterhooks since the killings.

Phillip Henriques, member of parliament for Clarendon North Western, said the incident has brought shock, horror and disbelief to the area.

“The Kilsyth, Grantham area is normally a very quiet area, nothing of this extent, so it’s quite shocking ... very hard to deal with. It’s too much. This is too far. The whole community is in shock right now. It is definitely out of character, and very unusual for this part of the countryside to have a situation like this,” said Henriques on Saturday.

He also implored citizens to steer away from crime, urging, “more violence doesn’t solve killings”.

In addition, Henriques has made an appeal to residents to assist the police with their investigations.

“My advice is to speak to the law enforcement [personnel] as much as possible, cooperate, and do whatever they can information-wise, because something like this needs to be dealt with, and dealt with swiftly. We have to solve this situation, it is not good, not normal, and there’s obviously more to it that we’ll find out hopefully the investigation,” Henriques said.

Similar sentiments were expressed by head of the Clarendon Police, Superintendent Carlos Russell, who made a similar appeal for residents to share what they know with the police.

Anyone with information that could aid the investigation is being asked to contact the Frankfield Police at 876 904-4507, Crime Stop at 311, or police emergency number 119.