Police brace for all-out gang war in Cocorite

Co­corite res­i­dents are now brac­ing them­selves for an “all-out war” among the mem­bers of the com­mu­ni­ty fol­low­ing yes­ter­day’s at­tempt on the life of busi­ness­man Dwayne King.

Po­lice of­fi­cers are, how­ev­er, ex­pect­ed to in­crease pa­trols along the East-West Cor­ri­dor, West­ern Main Road and Co­corite as a re­sult of this threat, the T&T Guardian was told. Po­lice be­lieve there is an in­ter­nal split in one of the ma­jor gangs in the area who re­fer to them­selves as “Mus­lims.” The split oc­curred ear­li­er this year and has led to sev­er­al mur­ders from April to Sep­tem­ber 26.

T&T Guardian was told that some of the gang mem­bers who fell out from the group are now turn­ing their guns on their for­mer col­leagues for rea­sons un­known. It is sus­pect­ed that when­ev­er a killing in the area is car­ried out, blame is be­ing placed on the ri­val “Ras­ta City” gang. But, ac­cord­ing to po­lice in­tel­li­gence, “the Mus­lims are war­ring with each oth­er.”

Speak­ing with the T&T Guardian yes­ter­day, an el­der in the com­mu­ni­ty who wished not to be named for fear he may be killed, said the at­tempt on King’s life was just a “tip of the ice­berg.”

“Them fel­las mean busi­ness and they will walk up to any­one now and shoot them in cold blood,” the el­der said.

A Wa­ter­hole moth­er, whose son was killed re­cent­ly, said she is now fear­ful for her re­main­ing chil­dren.

“Every night you hear gun­shots all around you like rain and ever so of­ten some­one right here gets killed. Over the past few months, we have lost a lot of sons and it is be­ing said that more lives will soon be tak­en.

“I plan to move out but I’m afraid if I take my chil­dren their soon-to-be-killers will fol­low wher­ev­er they go. I’m just wait­ing but hop­ing no more bul­lets fly.”

Res­i­dents strong­ly be­lieve the gun­men in yes­ter­day’s rush hour traf­fic at­tack along the Churchill Roo­sevelt High­way knew King’s where­abouts and the oth­er per­son he was with. “The gun­men had a mo­tive and they had the per­fect tim­ing…maybe it didn’t go how they planned it but it was well-or­ches­trat­ed. I would not be sur­prised if King, if he sur­vives, iden­ti­fies the gun­men. I think it’s peo­ple close to him but all of us have to watch our own backs be­cause in this dance you can’t even trust your own shad­ow,” a res­i­dent said.

Of­fi­cers of the In­ter-Agency Task Force and Port-of-Spain Task Force re­spond­ed on the scene along the Churchill Roo­sevelt High­way af­ter King was shot sev­er­al times as he sat in his Ti­i­da by two masked gun­men who came out a Toy­ota Field­er wag­on around 8.30 am yes­ter­day. The dri­ver of the wag­on sped off and the ve­hi­cle was lat­er found aban­doned in the Sea Lots area.

King was tak­en to hos­pi­tal where he was un­der heavy po­lice guard af­ter un­der­go­ing surgery last evening.

- by Rhondor Dowlat 

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