Friday 12th May, 2006

 

Shoot-out stray bullet misses official’s chair

 
 
 
 
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By Kayode James

A stray bullet from a shoot-out between rival gangs could have claimed the life of Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Trade and Industry Edwina Leacock—if she had been sitting in her Riverside Plaza office yesterday morning.

The bullet smashed through Leacock’s office window a few feet above the ground directly behind her desk, a source in the building confirmed.

According to the source, investigators confirmed that the bullet pierced the thick glass at lethal velocity.

A bullet fragment was found inside the office.

The shot was fired shortly after 10 am, during a shoot-out between two rival gangs on nearby St Paul Street.

Ministry employees witnessed a gang member shooting wildly into the air during the melee.

The source said the bullet hole was discovered after employees investigated noises coming from Leacock’s empty office.

Ministry of Trade and Industry communications specialist Tanya Carr said the incident shocked the building’s employees, but added that the situation was handled quickly and professionally by the police.

The effects of the shoot-out were also felt a stone’s throw away, where Bethlehem Boys’ and Girls’ RC Schools were both shut down shortly after midday.

Parents were advised to pick up their children from school because of the incident.

Sources said the shoot-out was heard clearly in the schools, and that many of the young children were crying in fear.

The children are frequently exposed to violence in the area, but have never grown accustomed to it, the source explained.

Teachers at the school are calling for assistance and counselling from the Ministry of Education, and want police protection for students as they leave the school on afternoons.

©2005-2006 Trinidad Publishing Company Limited

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