April 18, 2006 – Two men and one 16-year-old boy — all St. John residents — were arrested Saturday in connection with a series of shootings that occurred more than a week ago on St. John.
Denzil Stevens, 22, has been charged with first-degree assault and possession of a deadly weapon in the commission of a crime of violence. Stevens, who lives at 10A-1 Estate Carolina, remains in St. Thomas jail because he was unable to post the $200,000 bail set by Superior Court.
Mekel Blash, 18, was charged with conspiracy to commit assault in the first degree and accessory after the fact. Blash, who lives at Estate Rendezvous, was unable to post the $125,000 bail set by Superior Court. He was remanded to St. Thomas jail.
The 16-year-old, who lives in Hard Labor, has been charged with conspiracy to commit an assault in the first degree, mayhem, misprision of a felony, as a principle in connection with the assault, and accessory after the fact. He has been sent to the Youth Rehabilitation Center on St. Croix.
Police Department spokesman Sgt. Thomas Hannah said Tuesday that the three arrested were involved with a shooting that happened at 11:34 p.m. April 7 in front of Meada's Plaza in Cruz Bay. That shooting came on the heels of one earlier that evening and another incident occurring around midnight April 8.
"They're retaliating against each other," Hannah said.
He said the police are still looking for others in connection with the shootings.
In the first shooting, at 7:40 p.m. April 7, a 16-year-old was shot in Cruz Bay.
In the second incident, which happened at 11:34 p.m. April 7 at Meada's Plaza, Jahil Ward, 18, was shot several times in the back. After treatment at Myrah Keating Smith Community Health Center and Roy L. Schneider Hospital, he was airlifted to a Puerto Rico Hospital. Ward has since been released from the hospital.
According to police officials, Ward identified Stevens as the man who shot him several times in the lower back.
The shootings wrapped up at midnight April 8, when someone fired buckshot into a shanty in Coral Bay, hitting the three people inside.
In a press release, Police Commissioner Elton Lewis urged the public to come forward with information regarding these and any other incidents. All information provided by the public is confidential.
Call the Criminal Investigation Bureau on St Thomas at 715-5522 and the Major Crime Unit at 715-5534.
On St. Croix, reach the Criminal Investigation Bureau at 778-2211, extension 6033 or 6037.
On St. John, please call the Operation Crack Down Unit at 693-8880, extension 5207 or 5208.
Additionally, people with information may call 911.
Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.