Triple Shooting Murder: Police Release Names

March 21, 2010

Bermuda has experienced the second murder of the year, with the death of 26 year old James Lawes following Friday night’s shooting of three men. The murder victim, James Lawes is the son in law of former UBP senator Gina Spence Farmer. The Jamaican national worked as a barber, and was married to Plush Salon owner Greashena Spence-Lawes. He died early Sunday morning of his injuries sustained in the Friday shooting.

The other two victims, 49 year old Bermudian Robin Stovell and 26 year old Jamaican Maurice Martin are presently in hospital, with Mr. Martin recovering from multiple gunshot wounds. They are in stable condition.

Police spokesman Dwayne Caines, along with Acting Commissioner Mike Jackman, Deputy Acting Commissioner Paul Wright and Chief Inspector Nicholas Pedro held a press conference at 3pm this afternoon outside of Place’s Place Bar – the spot of the triple shooting on Friday. You can view a brief video of the press conference here.

L to R: Acting Commissioner Mike Jackman, Deputy Acting Commissioner Paul Wright, Chief Inspector Nicholas Pedro

L to R: Acting Commissioner Mike Jackman, Deputy Acting Commissioner Paul Wright, Chief Inspector Nicholas Pedro

At around 10:55pm on March 19, the three men were shot in the parking lot of Place’s Place, located on the junction of Court and Dundonald Street.

The police statements confirmed 99% of our eyewitness report, with only one differential. Our source had said 6-7 shots were fired, whereas the police had stated it was “at least 11 shots fired”. The names released were also the exact names given to us on Friday night by our source.

They confirmed, as Bernews had reported only hours after the shooting, that two men on a black bike rode onto Court Street coming from the TCD side, turned left on Dundonald Street then enter the parking area. They then drove up on the sidewalk and shot at the three men at very close range in the vicinity of the alley located between Place’s Place and the barbershop. The pillion passenger got off the bike to shoot, and they then sped away back towards the TCD area.

The police stated that it was not a indiscriminate shooting, and that it appears one or more of the men were targeted. They have been unable to ascertain a motive yet.

The Police also revealed that a previous incident that night involving men on a bike chasing a man in Jamaican Grill’s parking lot appears to be related.

A forensic pathologist is due to arrive on the on the island tomorrow in order to conduct the autopsy.

Police are appealing for anyone with any information to come forward, pointing out that on 11pm on Friday night there is no shortage of people in the area. They had previously stated ‘no matter how insignificant’ information may seem, to please assist if you can.

Any witnesses to this shooting or anyone with any information are urged to contact the Serious Crime Unit on 299-8115 or the independent 24 hour confidential Crime Stoppers Bermuda hotline on 800-8477. Anonymous tips can also be sent via the Crime Stoppers Bermuda website. They stressed the need for the community to become involved, and also assured complete confidentiality.

Since the beginning of the year, there have been two people fatally shot and seven people injured. There are 38 firearms incidents reported to date for the year and this compares with 92 in total for 2009.

Previous gun incidents in March 2010 include:

  • A 16 year old was shot at a late night function at Bermuda College Sat, March 13 [link]
  • There was a gun fired in the Somerset area on Tues, Mar 16 [link]
  • There was a gun fired on Curving Avenue on Wed, March 17 [link]
  • A taxi driver was robbed by a man wielding ”what appeared to be a firearm” on Thurs, March 18
  • A gun was fired in Warwick on Fri, March 19 [link]

This is the second murder in Bermuda this year, with the first occurring on January 4th, when 34 year old Perry Puckerin was gunned down in Hamilton Parish.

Bernews extends our sincere sympathies to the family and friends of the victim, and good wishes for a full recovery for the other two victims.

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