Jamaica police deny gays being targeted

Dwayne Jone was stabbed, shot and chopped up in July.

A senior police official has denied claims that gays are being targeted in Jamaica, despite a recent spate of hate attacks.

Assistant Commissioner of Police Devon Watkis told The Gleamer newspaper that there is no evidence the LGBT community faces higher levels of violence compared to other Jamaicans.

“Our numbers generally show that we have had some violence committed against the citizens of Jamaica, inclusive of all groups,” he said

“I have no specific evidence outside of those isolated ones, that this group is a target group as opposed to the ordinary citizen,” Watkis added.

Last week, openly gay Dean Moriah, a well known 41-year-old entertainment coordinator, was stabbed to death in his Montego Bay home, which was set on fire.

Also last week, two men involved in a minor traffic accident in Old Harbour had to seek refuge at a police station after an angry mob accused them of being gay.

In July, 17-year-old Dwayne Jones was brutally murdered by a mob at a party near Montego Bay after partygoers “discovered” that she was not biologically female.

There were reports of at least four other anti-gay attacks in August alone in Jamaica, which has often been described “the most homophobic place on earth”.

Same-sex sex is illegal in Jamaica and is punishable by up to 10 years in jail.

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