At least 6 persons were shot at Accompong Maroon Festival in St Elizabeth Thursday night, according to sources one person passed away as a result of the shooting.
The shooting took place at about 9 PM, two children were also shot in the incident which was the result of a reported dispute at the annual festival.
“I can confirm that there was a shooting incident,” said a high-ranking officer.
The Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) is currently investigating the matter after it was revealed that a police officer who is a member of the Maroon community was involved in the incident.
The man who was shot fatally has been identified as Lloyd Davis, he’s from Bethsalem community in the parish.
With the fact that public gatherings with over 10 people and events as such are banned in Jamaica, there was much controversy surrounding the staging of the festival which also marks the start of the Maroon New Year on January 6. The festival was also put on to celebrate the 284th anniversary of the signing of the peace treaty with the British.
The event is regarded as a religious duty of Maroons whereby they honour their ancestors and “to show the way forward for the born and the unborn. This is our way of life,” head of state of the Cockpit Country His Excellency Chief R. Currie outlined in a social media post prior to the event.
However, no approvals were given to host the event and the police on Wednesday warned about the keeping of the event which was also a breach of the Disaster Risk Management Act.
Leader, Chief R. Currie has been under much scrutiny after being the centre of several violent incidents over the past year with his Maroon people. In November of 2021, a man was physically assaulted by an armed man said to be a close associate of Chief Currie.
More details soon