…Following Shooting Of 17-Year-Old Son

PaynesvilleThe Rehab Community in Paynesville was rocked by a tragic incident on July 1, 2024, when a 17-year-old boy, James Kandy, was fatally shot by a PSU officer.

The boy’s mother, Mayama Kamara, along with her three other children, is now left to grapple with the sudden and heartbreaking loss.

Mayama, a single mother and marketer who sells pepper, bitter balls, and other food items at the Clar Duncan Weah market, recounted the heart-wrenching events leading up to her son’s death. James, who was living with Mayama since he was a young child, was a 9th-grade student who was supposed to graduate soon.

He was standing near their house, placing sand over the roots of the structure, when the tragedy struck.

“He was my sister-in-law’s son. She gave him to me, and he was living with me from his smallest time in Bong. When me and her brother parted, I came here, and when I settled, she said come for your son. I went back for him,” Mayama said in tears.

Mayama described James as a hardworking and obedient child who had no problems with anyone. “The community people will tell you about his behavior. The boy had no problem with people. He was the one who built the house for me, no man. Even on his campus, his teachers would call me and say what type of obedient child you have,” she said.

James, she said, was known for his dedication and responsibility. He would sell airtime to support the family, and despite their struggles, he never caused any trouble. “He doesn’t have a problem with anybody. He used to sell minutes (airtime) so we can survive. We sell our small small things right in front of our house,” she shared.

“He was the one who built the house for me, no man. Even on his campus, his teachers would call me and say what type of obedient child you have,” she said.

On the day of the incident, PSU officers reportedly acting on the orders of businessman Mawolo Jallah arrived in the community to arrest two individuals following a heated exchange.

The individuals were in a nearby ghetto, and the PSU was there to execute the arrest. Eyewitnesses reported that after detaining the suspects, the PSU attempted to place them in Jallah’s car. Friends of the suspects refused, arguing that the suspects should not ride in the complainant’s vehicle.

This according to reports, led to a verbal altercation. The PSU, angered by the situation, pursued the friends who were preventing the arrest. The PSU officer stood in front of a fence gate at the property of former Liberia Football Association president Izetta Wesley and began shooting at the unarmed citizens who were fleeing.

A bullet struck James, causing him to fall instantly. “He was placing the sand in the plastic to place it over the house when they shot him. The man fired from the avenue,” she explained.

The Liberia National Police (LNP) has confirmed the incident and expressed deep regret over the loss Kandy. In an official statement, the LNP acknowledged that the preliminary information suggests the LNP responded to a violent situation involving threats against a resident of the community by individuals suspected of involvement in drug trafficking.

During the response, Officer Ishmael Trawally discharged his firearm, leading to the unintended death of James Kandy at ELWA Hospital.

According to the statement, LNP is treating the matter with the utmost seriousness and has launched a comprehensive investigation to determine the circumstances surrounding the incident.

“We are dedicated to maintaining transparency and accountability throughout this process and will provide updates to the public as necessary. Our deepest sympathies go out to the family and friends of James Kandy during this challenging period,” the statement read.

1 Comment
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