BY BALFORD HENRY Senior staff reporter firstname.lastname@example.org Sunday, July 10, 2016
Human rights issues surrounding the fatal shooting of 29-year-old cookshop operator Nakiea Robert Jackson in 2014 may have been laid to rest with him on Thursday when the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court threw out the case for lack of evidence.
But Jackson’s sister, Shackelia, a virtual one-woman advocacy against what she felt was his wrongful death, and who has been constantly travelling between her home in the United States and Kingston seeking justice for her brother, says she is not backing down until the decision is reversed.
Jackson was killed by the police on January 20, 2014, while he was serving food at his small cookshop on Orange Street, in the Orange Villa area of downtown Kingston.
His killing became a major human rights issue at the time, as members of the Orange Villa community openly displayed their anger at his death, despite apologies that he may have been killed in error. Crowds protested by blocking Orange Street and setting fire to the garbage blockade.
The State responded with visits from then Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, Philip Paulwell (representing then Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller), then National Security Minister Peter Bunting, Member of Parliament (MP) for Kingston Western, Desmond McKenzie, then Police Commissioner Owen Ellington, as well as endless apologies for the way in which Jackson was killed.
Paulwell, McKenzie and a team from the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) were also special guests at Jackson’s funeral on February 22 on Orange Street, downtown Kingston.
He also recalled Jackson as a young man who “had fed many people and was loved by those who knew and came in contact with him”.
Eventually, a special constable, Leighton Rose, who was attached to Area Four, was charged with the murder of Jackson and the proceedings began in court in February 2014. Stop orders were placed on the accused cop and he was ordered to surrender his travel documents and to stay away from the Orange Villa community.
But Jackson’s case was booted out of the Corporate Area criminal court on July 7.
Investigations by the Jamaica Observer revealed that there were three witnesses available at the beginning of the trial. However, while two were available up to Thursday, one refused to attend the hearings claiming that he feared for his life. more