Parkwood residents frustrated with police after child is killed

2017-09-05 06:02

The community of Parkwood have been left in distraught after yet another killing of a child in the area.

A six-year-old was shot and killed in Parkwood Estate on Sunday afternoon, leaving the community frustrated.

According to a representative of the Grassy Park Community Policing Forum (CPF), officers who attended to the crime scene faced an angry crowd who wanted to deal with one of the suspects detained by the police.

A police vehicle was attacked with a pick handle, damaging the windscreen and body of the vehicle, while various constables were manhandled in the effort to get to the suspect.

“When is the slaughter of the innocent going to stop? I listened to the sadness in the voices of the community members who called me about the shooting. It’s sad. The people are upset and now the big job is to restore calm,” says Philip Bam, spokesperson of the Grassy Park CPF.

“We understand the frustration of the community as they have been buckling under gang violence in their neighbourhood. Calls from angry community members were received about this loss of a young life.”

He says the CPF’s members send their condolences to the mother and family of the child and they want to assure them that they will work closely with the police to find justice for the victim and due retribution.

“We call upon the community to stay calm and not to take their frustration out on the police. Damaging the very resources that must help us is not the kind of response expected from responsible citizens. We have warned in the past that the frustration of the community with the criminal justice system will spill over into irrational reaction and urge the police to leave no stone unturned in bringing the perpetrator and his ilk to book,” he says.

“We demand that the guns be removed from Parkwood Estate and other suburbs in the Grassy Park policing area. This cannot continue as if it is normal. This is an abnormal situation and calls for drastic measures. We realise that the Grassy Park police have tried their best to deal with the situation in Parkwood, Ottery and Lotus River, but it appears that it is not effective. The community has come forward with information to the CPF which would require attention from the provincial or national police authorities as well,” he adds.

Resident Ethan de Vaal warns that the community will take the law into their own hands if police do not step up.

“We are sick and tired of crying. We have had enough of the killings in our community. Our children are going one by one and the police and government cannot fix this problem. They are scared to come into our area to remove these killers. We are begging you. Help us fight this issue for we cannot hold any more pain, seeing our children killed daily,” says De Vaal.

Grassy Park police say a case of murder is currently being investigated.

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