Multiple shooting a ‘targeted attack’

Deputy Police Commissioner Kurt Walton says investigators believe this morning’s multiple shooting was a targeted attack on two men, one of whom was killed at the scene, and not a random incident.

The second target, who was wounded in the attack at Vic’s Bar on Seymour Drive, George Town, remains in critical condition at hospital and fighting for his life after being shot several times.

“This is not a random attack. This looks like a targeted attack and, certainly, from what we’ve seen thus far on the CCTV, it’s clear that the two individuals who were laying on the floor inside the bar… were the intended victims,” Walton said in an interview with the Cayman Compass near the crime scene this afternoon.

He said the incident started outside the bar around 1:45am.

Deputy Police Commissioner Kurt Walton. – Photo: Alvaro Serey

“What we do know is that one suspect turned up and started shooting … initially outside, as indiscriminate shooting. Persons were rushing in to seek refuge within the bar itself and the suspect followed behind and then started shooting down at two individuals who were on the floor, one of whom is now deceased and one is in critical condition at the hospital,” Walton said.

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The four others who were shot were taken to hospital and are believed to have sustained non-life-threatening injuries.

No suspects were arrested.

Walton said he was aware of the public concern following this latest shooting, but he said RCIPS officers will act accordingly to keep the islands safe.

“This is very serious in the Cayman Islands,” he said. “We certainly are not used to this. We will never get used to it, this is unacceptable. You can imagine [this is] a traumatic experience for all of those victims and their families.

“We’ve had 16 people shot since 10 April up until last night.”

He said heightened tensions needed to be dealt with immediately.

“We need to suppress that, which the only way you can do that. The only way you can take on a gun crime is to confront it head on, and we will need to do that,” he said.

Walton said a major incident room has been started and more than a dozen officers had been assigned to the investigation.

“We’re pulling all our analysts and we’re certainly going to take a holistic approach. The plan is not to leave … any stone unturned,” he said.

Walton said he understood the concerns of the community, especially since this was the second multiple shooting incident in just over a week. On Thursday, 1 July, four people were shot on Martin Drive, one of whom was killed.

He said police will be deploying its armed officers and the public can expect high visibility as the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service moves to stamp out the spate of gun crime.

“We will be looking at a robust armed policing response to suppress what is clearly heightened tensions within, certainly, gun crime or gun violence at the moment,” he said.

Walton told the Compass it was too early in the investigation to say whether the Martin Drive shooting and the Seymour Drive shootings were connected or if they were gang-related.

“We keep our mind open as to what could have taken place and we will explore all of those lines of inquiry. It’s still early to see whether or not there’s any connectivity. … We’re not going to assume anything and we certainly going to check everything,” Walton said.

Investigations are continuing.

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