Brutal murder of 14-year-old student draws condemnation from Jamaica government


Kayalicia Simpson (Credit: Jamaica Observer)

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Wednesday March 4, 2015, CMC – The Jamaica government has condemned the brutal murder of a 14-year-old student who was hacked to death and her mutilated body dumped a few meters from her home on Tuesday.

Youth and Culture Minister Lisa Hanna in condemning the murder, said such attacks have no place in “our society” and is calling on residents in the community to share any information they may have with the security forces.

“The Ministry of Youth and Culture, condemns in the strongest possible terms the level of violence brought against this innocent child as she got ready for school. There can be no justification for such unspeakable savagery against a 14 year-old.”

Police reports indicate that Kayalicia Simpson, a grade eight student from the farming community of Newlands, went outside her house as she prepared for school.

But her body was found half an hour after she left the house in bushes close to the one-room wooden structure in which she lived.

Education Minister Ronald Thwaites said that the community must assist in bringing Kayalicia’s killers to justice, and Opposition Leader Andrew Holness urged the government to “move quickly” to address the spate of attacks against women and children.

“We cannot continue in a situation where so many of our children, especially young girls, are the victims of these gruesome acts. We have seen too many.

“This is not just a matter for the police as we, as Jamaicans, must play our role in turning in all the criminals, especially those that prey on our women and children. The Government is failing in its role to protect our children as it seems, instead of getting better, the situation is getting worse,” Holness said.

In a statement, the Child Development Agency (CDA) said that the the murder comes a short period after the killing of several youngsters since the start of 2015.

It said this is an indication that communities need to deepen co-operation with State agencies on stronger action to curb and eliminate violence against our children.

“It is time that all well-thinking Jamaicans take a stand to reject violence against children in all its forms, by better guiding and protecting our youngsters, instilling in them proper values to make right choices, and exposing the perpetrators of these vile criminal acts so they can face the full force of the law. As long as some citizens treat child abuse as normal and acceptable, our children will be in grave danger of losing not only their childhood, but their very lives,” the CDA urged.

The CDA said it is “providing counselling and other forms of support to those directly affected by this vicious act”.

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