September 7, 2023 – The Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) responded to and commenced investigations into three separate police shooting incidents resulting in the death of three men. These incidents occurred within a 24 hour period in the parishes of Clarendon (September 5), St. Catherine (September 6) and Kingston (September 6).
No body worn cameras were reported as being issued to the officers in any of these fatal shooting incidents.
Fatal Shooting of Kishane Shortridge – Exeter, Clarendon
This police fatal shooting incident occurred on September 5, 2023. It is reported that police officers were on surveillance enquiries, when they entered the premises of Mr. Shortridge. The police officers allege that a firearm was pointed at them by Mr. Shortridge and in response they discharged their weapons in his direction. The 31 year old, Kishane Shortridge was pronounced dead at the hospital. One firearm, silver and black 9mm pistol without a serial number, was reported as recovered from the incident scene.
Fatal Shooting of Oshane Cooke – Waterloo Community, Spanish Town, St. Catherine
The police have reported that on September 6, officers with a search warrant were on a special operation in search of wanted men and persons of interest. The officers entered a premises, and during the search and clearing of the building, a man pointed a firearm at the police, and the officer fired at the man, The man was pronounced dead at hospital, and identified as 27 year old Oshane Cooke. A firearm was reported as recovered from the deceased and another firearm was allegedly retrieved from another room in the premises. Three men were taken into police custody.
Fatal Shooting of Nicholas Miller – Denham Town, Kingston
The police have stated that a team on mobile patrol were engaged in gunfire by men exiting a Black Honda stream motorcar. It is reported that the men ran in different directions. Subsequently, residents were seen with a man suffering from gunshot injuries, who was taken to the hospital and pronounced dead. The deceased was identified as 24 year old Nicholas Miller. No firearm was reported as recovered from the incident scene.
A team from INDECOM, led by Commissioner Faulkner, revisited the scene in Denham Town today (September 7). This revisit was to allay the fears of protesting citizens as well as canvass for witnesses. Residents have reported an account which contradicts the initial police reports. The investigation will seek to uncover the circumstances which resulted in the death of Mr. Miller.
Witness canvassing continues to be an important element of INDECOM investigations in lieu of CCTV footage or body worn cameras, as most cases often only have police officers as the sole eyewitness. The Commission is appealing and encouraging persons with information on these three fatal shooting incidents as well as the September 1, 2023 shooting injury on Stennett Street in Port Maria to contact the Commission. Information, photos and videos can be sent to INDECOM’s official WhatsApp at (876)553-5555.
INDECOM’s investigation involved the processing of the incident scene, processing of the firearms of all involved officers and the three recovered firearms. The bodies of the deceased were all photographed and their hands were swabbed for gunshot residue.
All concerned officers provided an initial account to INDECOM Investigators. The concerned officers were subsequently issued with Notices to provide a statement and or attend the office of the Commission to be interviewed pursuant to Section 21 of the Independent Commission of Investigations Act, 2010. A further planned operation interview will also be conducted in relation to the fatal shooting of Oshane Cooke.