Havendale under siege from criminals

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For years, residents of the middle class community of Havendale in St Andrew have been complaining they are being held at ransom by criminals who are committing armed robberies at will.

On the morning of Saturday August 4, a young couple was reportedly held at gunpoint and robbed of everything but their lives. They had reportedly just walked onto Havendale Drive from Mannings Hill Road when they were approached by two men who brandished handguns and demanded that they hand over their back packs, wallets, cellular phones and other valuables.

The backpacks contained laptop computers which the couple used to work on social media services for entities. The profits are in turn used to fund the teenagers' tertiary education costs.

A few weeks ago, a carload of robbers held up a female and threatened to rape her after stealing her belongings. That incident followed another in which a teenaged girl suffered several cuts and bruises after she scaled a barbed wire fence in order to escape gunmen travelling in a motorcar who demanded her to get inside their vehicle.

The community has been a feeding ground for robbers for years and the residents have complained that, despite numerous reports to the police, it seems the robbers can't be caught.

Havendale residents are calling on the police to ramp up their presence in the community and make a concerted effort to catch the nefarious characters.

"This has been going on for too long now. We are tired of making reports and although there are police patrols, the thieves always seem to get away. We cannot live as hostages in our own area," one distraught man said.

"There has to be a way for the police to help us. Maybe by walking along the road and catch them off guard. For years we have been suffering now. We need help before somebody gets killed by these thugs," one woman, who declined to be named, said.