Warring women causing headache for cops
Women claiming allegiance to the rival Darksyde and Genasyde gangs in central Kingston are causing mayhem in the Parade Gardens community as they violently confront each other in the streets, utilising objects like big stones and other sharp missiles.
THE WEEKEND STAR understands that the Kingston Central Police Division has received numerous reports from concerned citizens who have been caught up in the chaos. At least nine women appeared before a judge at the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court earlier this week to answer to the charge of affray. Parade Gardens was declared a zone of special operations (ZOSO) in January 2022. But this latest development, according to Superintendent Berrisford Williams, the division's commanding officer, is a threat to peace efforts.
"It is a constant issue that we have where we are getting reports of persons fighting and so forth. They are charged for varying [offences] from assault occasioning bodily harm, to wounding and affray," Williams said. In 2022, murders and shootings dipped by 39 and 41 per cent, respectively when compared to 2021. There was also a 17 per cent reduction in serious crimes in 2022 on year-on-year figures. Williams credited the implementation of the ZOSO in Parade Gardens for those numbers. But he now believes the ongoing conflicts may pull the area back to a bloody repeat of 2021.
"And that is why we are being vigilant and always intervening with a view of ending the conflict. We are encouraging the young ladies to just desist from this sort of behaviour and if they don't, we are going to continue make the arrest and take them to court," said Williams.
"We have intervened many times, have had meetings, discussions and arrests. There are some persons who have been charged multiple times who have matters before the court. As some of them come out, they are involved again. We know that, at least once per week, a call will come in about another conflict. The challenge then is having to utilise resources to go into the area to try prevent the conflicts, arrest the persons and to be preparing and taking these persons to court," Williams added.