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‘FRIGHTENING’ - Police Federation condemns cop killers at illegal Clarendon party

Published:Monday | November 9, 2020 | 12:13 AMTamara Bailey/Gleaner Writer
Constable Kirkland Plummer who was killed Saturday night in Harwood, Clarendon.
Constable Kirkland Plummer who was killed Saturday night in Harwood, Clarendon.

HARWOOD, Clarendon:

The Police Federation has described Saturday night’s killing of Constable Kirkland Plummer in the central Jamaica district of Harwood as “a stark reminder of lawlessness in the society”.

Communications director at the federation, Inspector Jacqueline Brown, said that Plummer’s death brings to five the number of cops murdered since the start of the year.

She said that the constable’s killing was evidence of the lack of regard among citizens for the police.

“Constable Plummer was killed apprehending someone with an illegal firearm ... . We find that the actions of some of the residents are really frightening because after he was shot, he was stoned, and it is alarming to the police that citizens would be behaving in this manner.”

The Manchester police have confirmed that at least five persons have been arrested for breaching the 9 p.m. islandwide coronavirus curfew by hosting a party where the constable was shot and killed.

Superintendent Gary Francis, commanding officer of the Manchester Police Division, within which the borderline Spaldings Police Station falls, said that Plummer was attacked by patrons at approximately 9:40 p.m. after he disarmed a man who had reportedly discharged an illegal firearm.

The commanding officer said Plummer sustained what appeared to be a gunshot wound to the face and blunt-force trauma to the head, possibly caused by the impact from a stone.

Francis disclosed that the man who Plummer disarmed was also shot in the process and later succumbed to his injuries.

His identity was withheld pending further investigations up to press time Sunday.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness said offered condolences to the policeman's family.

“My heart goes out to his wife and three beautiful children who are left to mourn this devastating loss; they can count on the support of the government during this truly difficult time,” Holness said.

Francis said that detectives are yet to ascertain if Plummer stopped at the party in his capacity as a policeman or as a patron.

“He was on his own. It was not a patrol ... . We have heard that he was on his way through the area when he stopped to find out what was happening because a section of the road was blocked off, and we also heard that he was a patron there. We are not sure, but we are investigating that,” said the Manchester police chief.

Francis told The Gleaner that the five individuals, including the owner of the property where the event was held, were arrested for contravention of the Disaster Risk Management Act. Parties are banned in Jamaica as a coronavirus-prevention measure.

He said that an illegal firearm was seized from the scene and the constable’s weapon recovered. The police are still on the hunt for anyone else who might have been complicit in the cop’s slaying.

“We are appealing to persons who would have witnessed the incident to contact the police and assist them in the investigation,” said Francis.

The Manchester police chief said that Plummer, who was transferred to Spaldings in February, was an admirable cop.

“I was told that he was one of those willing police officers, very tactical, hence [that was] why he alone took on a gunman. That shows the kind of person who he was. He was a fearless cop and a very good team player,” Francis said.

The Police Federation’s Brown has called for tougher laws and penalties against firearm-related offences.

“It can’t be a slap on the wrist ... . It must be that there is a deterrent to criminal actions such as these,” Brown said.