Police: American killed in Jamaica during robbery

AP News
Posted: Jun 02, 2013 6:08 PM

KINGSTON, Jamaica (AP) — Two people, including a U.S. citizen, were fatally shot and a third person was wounded during a shooting that erupted when police confronted gunmen who were trying to rob a business in a coastal town in western Jamaica, authorities said Sunday.

Police did not release the American man's identity.

The Jamaica Observer said the U.S. man was hit in the crossfire between police and robbers Saturday evening in Savanna-La-Mar, the main town in the western parish of Westmoreland. It is not a community frequented by tourists.

In a statement, the Jamaica Constabulary Force gave few details. It said that shots were fired during the robbery and that a foreign national was killed and another person was wounded. It added that a fugitive identified only by the nickname "Bigga" also was shot and later pronounced dead at a hospital.

A police spokesman did not return calls seeking clarification on whether the American man was caught in crossfire between law enforcers and criminals as the local newspaper reported.

In the statement, police said a 9-mm pistol was seized from the man identified as Bigga, who it characterized as one of the parish's most wanted men. It said he was wanted for crimes including murder, rape and armed robbery.

An independent commission that investigates alleged abuses by Jamaica's security forces has started an investigation.

The U.S. Embassy said its officials had informed the American citizen's next of kin of his death and were awaiting an official report from Jamaican authorities.