Residents left shaken

The shooting deaths of two men in Jubilee Gardens, off Gladstone Road, late Tuesday night left some in that community shaken.

The men were found in a car in a driveway shot to death, police reported.

Arlington King, 79, a native of Cat Island, has lived in Jubilee Gardens for nearly two years.

He recalled hearing what sounded like gunshots on Tuesday night.

“I heard about seven or eight of them,” King said.

“I heard bap, bap, bap, bap, bap, bap, bap, bap. Then, I heard a vehicle speed off.”

King said he was not sure what the sound was until he woke up yesterday morning and heard that the men were killed nearby.

He said it was worrisome that the killings happened so close to his home.

Other residents also expressed concern for their safety following the incident.

Philan Bowe, 46, a father of four, was one of those people.

He said he will now fear for his daughter’s safety whenever she goes to play outside.

“I am definitely worried because a stray bullet has nobody’s name on it,” Bowe said.

“It is very, very dangerous if you look at it like that. If you are caught in crossfire, of course it becomes dangerous and of great concern.”

He said he is doing everything in his power to ensure that his family is protected, which includes fencing in his yard and ensuring his alarm system is always working.

On Tuesday, Minister of National Security Marvin Dames said crime was down “when you compare this year with previous years”.

Gertrude Fernander, a resident of Jubilee Gardens for more than 13 years, said she does not feel as though crime is down.

She said there seems to be more murders happening and insisted the issue was not exclusive to Jubilee Gardens.

“Everybody, in all areas of Nassau, [has] issues,” Fernander said.

“People find you no matter where you are, especially if you offend somebody. But for the most part I’m fine because I can go out in my car and get into an accident and die today, so it is what it is.”

But Sonovia Taylor, 31, whose brother was murdered in the area in December 2016, shot that down.

She said it should “not be normal for us to see murders happening and feel nothing”.

“Gun violence took my brother’s life in our own yard somewhat farther down the road,” Taylor said.

“They murdered my brother.”

Taylor claimed her brother’s death was a case of mistaken identity.

“He was standing in our yard because he had just walked outside. I think somebody came for him, not him per se, but my other brother,” she said.

“They mistook him for my other brother and that’s how it happened. They approached him and killed him right there in our yard. It has been hard on my family.”

Taylor said it was on that day that she realized Jubilee Gardens was no longer the safe neighborhood it once was.

“This area used to be safe when we first moved out here, but it doesn’t feel that way anymore,” she said.

“I just don’t feel that safeness anymore, not even in my house.”

The murder count in The Bahamas for the year is 86, according to police.

The count as of this time last year was 117.

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Jasper Ward

Jasper Ward started at The Nassau Guardian in September 2018. Ward covers a wide range of national and social issues. Education: Goldsmiths, University of London, MA in Race, Media and Social Justice

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