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Wednesday 22 January 2020
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San Fernando shooter runs into girls’ school

Anstey memorial Anglican school on Drayton street San Fernando where a gunman fled through the premises after shooting after his inteded target  near Coffee street San Fernando. - Lincoln Holder
Anstey memorial Anglican school on Drayton street San Fernando where a gunman fled through the premises after shooting after his inteded target near Coffee street San Fernando. - Lincoln Holder

A gunman who shot at and missed his intended target in the streets of San Fernando on Thursday morning fled police by running into an all-girls' school.

The gunman jumped over the fence of Anstey Memorial Girls’ Anglican School at Drayton Street and ran into adjoining streets.

Despite the commotion, which started near Coffee Street, classes were not disrupted.

Newsday learnt the school’s security guards saw the unknown man running from the front to the back of the building. Guards immediately alerted the principal, not knowing the man was fleeing a crime scene.

It was unclear whether he had a gun or had dropped it in his haste to escape.

Newsday was told the principal called the police, some of whom were on patrol. Officers arrived within a minute and searched but did not find the intruder or the gun.

Police received a report of a man shooting at another man at Coffee Street shortly after 9 am. Southern Division officers responded, including the Emergency Response Patrol and Mon Repos station.

Eyewitnesses told policethe intended target was running for his life, with the gunman pursuing him. With sirens blaring nearby, the shooter changed direction to escape arrest.

Pointing in the direction of Coffee Street and environs, Wayne Hernandez, who was sitting at a nearby bar at Drayton Street recalled what he saw.

Hernandez said, "Someone shot at somebody up the road. I was in front, and I went inside when I heard the shots.

"Police responded very quickly. About five jeeps came within a minute. The children were not screaming or anything."

He added, "The police were all over, looking for the men. As far as I know, no one was injured."

The intended target later met with police and was helping with their investigation.

The TT Unified Teachers Association (TTUTA) has since expressed "extreme concern as the scourge of gun violence continues to affect our schools."

A representative said, "It is clear that there are elements in society who blatantly disregard the institutions which are sacred in our society."

TTUTA called on the State to establish cross-agency mechanisms to support teachers and students in their desire for a safe and secure teaching and learning environment.

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