Fake gun found near school

Armed police officers and K9 teams were called out to search an area near John Gray High School Monday afternoon following a caller’s reported sighting of two men with a gun near the school’s campus.

Shortly after the report was made, two men aged 20 and 23, were arrested on Walkers Road near Vampt motors in connection with the on-going police search. They had not been charged as of press time.

Search teams located the weapon, which was later determined to be an imitation firearm, and a bag of ganja hidden under a bush near the fence line of the school.

Police said the men who were arrested were not John Gray students and that the incident really had nothing to do with the school, other than the fact that the location where the fake gun and drugs had been left was close to the campus. The Ministry of Education said it had not been informed of the incident.

Customs K9 units were originally called in to assist in the search since no Royal Cayman Islands Police K9 teams were available. All K9 units were eventually called off after officers found the imitation gun and drugs.

Convictions for possession of an imitation firearm can carry up to a 20 year prison sentence if the person found with the fake gun was proved to have the intention to commit a criminal offence. In those cases, Cayman Islands law does not differentiate between a real or fake weapon.

‘Members of communities are very concerned about the use of firearms in Cayman, and in case anybody thinks differently, I’m very concerned too,’ Acting Police Commissioner James Smith said. ‘But we’re taking action and will continue to take action to defeat men of violence.’

School burglarised

In a separate incident, police reported a break-in early Wednesday at John A. Cumber Primary school in West Bay.

At press time, officers were still looking into the burglary, which was believed to have occurred sometime around 2am by a suspect or suspects who entered through the front-window of the school.

Investigators believed at least ten classrooms and the administration office had been entered, but could not immediately determine what had been taken, if anything.

No arrests were reported.