Anthony Jones : “Mentally ill ex-convict fatally shot by police after attacking officers and damaging vehicles”

Death – Obituary – Accident and Crime News : In a tragic and alarming incident that unfolded late on a Saturday night, Anthony Jones, a 29-year-old mentally ill ex-convict, lost his life after being fatally shot by police at the Grants Pen Police Station in St Andrew, Jamaica. According to reports, Jones launched a violent attack on law enforcement officers, causing significant damage to a total of nine vehicles, three of which were service units. The chaotic scene saw officers desperately attempting to restrain him, with little success, until a female colleague intervened by discharging her service Glock pistol. Unfortunately, Jones succumbed to the gunshot wound while receiving treatment at the Kingston Public Hospital.

The incident occurred on the evening of Saturday, November 28, 2023, and left the officers at the Grants Pen Police Station stunned and deeply affected. Eyewitnesses reported hearing loud commotion, including the sound of shattering glass and a man shouting profanities. Upon investigation, it was discovered that Jones, armed with a knife and a piece of board, was responsible for the extensive damage to the vehicles. Furthermore, four of the vehicles’ tires were found to have been slashed.

As the officers approached Jones, urging him to cease his destructive behavior, he aggressively advanced towards a female constable while brandishing the knife and issuing threats to her life. Fearing for her own safety, as well as the lives of her colleagues, the constable made the difficult decision to discharge her service weapon, firing a single round that struck Jones in the upper body. Tragically, this proved to be a fatal wound, leading to his death upon arrival at the Kingston Public Hospital.

The Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) has initiated an official probe into the circumstances surrounding this fatal shooting. Meanwhile, it has come to light that Jones had been receiving treatment for schizophrenia since his release from prison in 2020, where he had served a five-year sentence for illegal firearm possession. The deceased’s relative revealed that Jones received regular treatment on Thursdays at the Edna Manley Health Centre, situated at the rear of the Grants Pen Police Station compound.

This incident has once again highlighted the need for improved training and resources for law enforcement officers when dealing with mentally ill individuals who pose a threat to themselves or others. INDECOM has consistently called for enhanced training in handling such situations, as previous years have seen a significant number of incidents involving the police and mentally ill individuals armed with weapons other than firearms.

The loss of Anthony Jones serves as a stark reminder of the challenges faced by both law enforcement and individuals suffering from mental illness. It is hoped that this tragedy will prompt a renewed commitment to providing officers with non-lethal weapons and comprehensive training in de-escalating confrontations involving mentally ill individuals. Only through improved understanding and support can we hope to prevent further loss of life in similar circumstances.

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