THE screams for help from an 18-year-old University student echoed through the village of Lime Fruit Road in Freeport early Monday morning as masked gunmen attempted to kidnap her. Minutes earlier, the men invaded the teen's home where they tied up her parents, beat and then robbed them of cash and jewellery.
Luckily the teen's screams awoke neighbours and a resident was able to trigger his alarm which police believe is what caused the gunmen to give up their kidnap attempt. This is the latest incident in a series of home invasions within the last two weeks in that community.
The teenager, who suffered cuts and bruises, is at San Fernando General Hospital along with her 58-year-old father and 23-year-old brother. Police said her father suffered blunt force trauma to his head and broken teeth after he was beaten by the men. Her brother suffered a broken sinus.
The teen's mother said her hands were still tied as she watched the men drag her daughter out of the house. “We were still tied up. I was screaming as they carried her away. You could not imagine how I felt seeing these men take my daughter from in front of my face,” the weeping woman said during an interview on Tuesday.
“She was kicking and fighting up as they took her. She held on to the walls struggling to get back inside. She called out my name and I was crying,” the mother said. She said that the men kept shouting, "Allyuh fighting back, yuh will see what we go do wid yuh."
"We all heard a neighbour's alarm go off and the men just dropped her and ran," the woman recalled. “I cannot stop thanking that man who sounded his alarm. I cannot stop thanking him. God knows what these evil men would have done to my daughter. I am so thankful.”
Police said the family was robbed of an undisclosed sum of money, thousands of dollars worth in jewellery and five cellphones. Only last week Thursday, at another house in the community, men broke into the home of a family of four and tied up a father and mother in front of their two teenage children.
Pointing guns to the teenagers the bandits threatened to shoot them if their parents did not hand over their "sou sou" money. Relatives said the boys, aged 14 and 17, wept as they saw the guns pointed at their faces. Their parents were forced to hand over $40,000 to the bandits.
A week ago there were reports of two home invasions in Lime Fruit Road. Police believe all home invasions are linked to the same group of criminals. Freeport police are investigating.