Eyewitness Report: Shooting of Jakai Harford

April 1, 2010

Bernews has obtained an eyewitness report of the March 27th shooting of Jakai Harford.

The taxi Mr. Harford was traveling in from St Georges entered Mission Lane from the North Shore side, and drove up the hill, stopping directly outside Mr Harford’s residence. The other gentlemen in the taxi had already been dropped off at nearby residences.

We were told from what they could see there were “at least two people” involved in the attack.

Upon arriving outside of Mr Harford’s residence, the taxi paused and Mr Harford did not immediately get out as he was speaking with a friend on the phone.

In the early hours of Saturday morning at the time of the attack it was raining, which according to the eyewitness probably allowed the assailants “cover” to be able to approach the taxi closely without being extremely noticeable to the occupants.

The Police forensic unit on Mission Lane on Sat March 27

The Police forensic unit on Mission Lane on Sat March 27

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After approaching the taxi, the assailant[s] fired into the taxi and the bullets went directly through the taxi window hitting Mr Harford.

The attacker[s] then opened the side door of the taxi and continued to fire directly inside, hitting Mr Harford again at close range.

The eyewitness said the bullets were whizzing very close to his head, and Mr Harford’s blood splattered on him.

He estimates around 10 shots were fired, and that Mr. Harford was hit around 5 times in the face/head and upper body including his shoulder. This would make the second time Mr Harford was shot in the shoulder, following his 2007 shooting.

Despite being shot multiple times, Mr Harford managed to get out, and make it safely to his home which was only a few feet away. He was then transported to King Edward Memorial Hospital.

We understand that most the shots appeared to have hit the taxi, which was severely damaged with bullets and blood splatter. The taxi driver fortunately narrowly escaped being shot himself.

We were told the fact Mr Harford was talking on the phone and did not immediately get out of the taxi probably saved his life, as if he had gotten right out the shooter[s] would have had a clear shot at him.

Speaking with a former Regiment Officer he tells us:

Struck twice in the head and possibly three more times in the upper body, it is likely that the weapon used in this shooting was a small caliber automatic handgun. Possibly a .22 or .25 or .32 caliber. It is unlikely, but still possible, that the victim would have survived for long with two impacts in his head from a normal 9mm bullet fired from a range of just a few feet. Or, the victim has been exceptionally and extra-ordinarily lucky, so far; given that this is the second time that he has been targeted and hit.

The police have made two arrests in connection with this case; an 18 and 23 year old who are both Bermudians and residents of Pembroke. The 18 year old was arrested on Saturday at his residence, and the 23 year old was arrested on Sunday. Both have since been released on Police bail.

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