Dead is 20-year-old Perry Jules of Active Hill, La Clery—a man feared by the community and its environs—who was at the top of the Royal St Lucia Police Force’s most wanted list.
There had already been five warrants out for Jules’ arrest. Wanted initially for robbery Jules’ list of alleged crimes had grown over the last few weeks. He was wanted for the use of a firearm, escaping lawful custody and the attempted murder of a policeman. At the time of his escape he was a prisoner in custody at Central police station having been sentenced to four years imprisonment for the offense of robbery.
According to information reaching the STAR over the weekend policemen found Jules on Friday evening at Bagatelle, a gun battle ensued and Jules was killed. Police confirmed the report to the STAR on Monday. Jules was with two other men in a motorcar when they were surrounded by armed policemen who asked Jules to get out of the vehicle and surrender himself. According to reports, the young man got out of the vehicle with a gun pointing at the officers. There was an exchange of gunfire. As to who fired first, investigations are still ongoing.
A police officer who spoke with the STAR said people had been calling the police station in fear inquiring whether they were doing anything to capture Jules whom they believe was a serious threat to them. “I am not vexed that he was killed,” said the officer. “He was a very dangerous individual. But he was so young. I don’t know what went wrong.”
Assistant commissioner of police in charge of crime Vernon Francois said he was not sure where Jules sustained the fatal shot. He is not sure how many bullets he received either. But he said the gun shells discharged from Jules’ gun found at the crime scene matched that of which was found at the scene on Micoud Street where Jules had reportedly walked up to a police officer and opened fired.
“Jules was a very serious threat. He was in possession of firearms and he was prepared to use it. We have been tracking him all over the place,” said Francois.“He was shooting with impunity. But I would have preferred it if he was arrested so that he could face the charges laid out against him.”When asked whether the officers could have dealt with the situation differently Francois said that the situation was dealt with properly and it has not caused much of a public issue.
“The results were good because no police officer got injured and there were no civilian casualties,” said Francois.The two young men with Jules, believed to be in their early 20s were also detained by the police during the operation. One sustained a gunshot wound to his upper body and is at Victoria Hospital. Presently, he is in stable condition. The other individual is in police custody and is being kept at Central police station. Police say charges will be brought against the two men for possession of firearms and ammunition.
Police investigations are still ongoing and statements are being taken from people who live near the scene of the shooting, as well as people who may have been witnesses. Francois said the British officer who is in charge of crime scene processing was called to the scene after the incident to comb through the area.A post mortem examination was scheduled for Jules yesterday.