The bloodstained mud in front of Soaliom Bar at Parish Land, Christ Church was the lingering remnant of a birthday celebration, which turned deadly in the wee hours of Friday morning.
The sombre faces of a few friends who sat together in the quiet community hours later, told the sad tale of the island’s 20th murder.
Thirty-four-year-old Colston Robinson, known to his friends as Stunna or Stun Gun, had earlier been toasting to another year of life with his loved ones at a karaoke lime, which was disrupted by a noisy dispute.
According to eyewitnesses, the deceased had intervened to stop the altercation and was threatened by one of the men involved.
No one expected what happened moments later.
“He [the alleged shooter] looked at me, then he looked at Stun Gun several times. He left and he came back, but I didn’t know he went home for a gun. When he came back he shot Stunna. I was right beside Stunna,” a man who said he was Colston’s friend told reporters without giving his name.
Residents claim the deceased and the shooter had been at odds for years. In fact, it was said that they were involved in a vicious feud.
Yet no one expected Friday morning’s sad turn of events with residents explaining that even though Robinson had had various run ins with the law, he had sought in recent times to turn his life around by starting a family and settling down.
“Stunna had he problems but all of us have problem. At least he made an effort to change. He had his girlfriend here and he was trying to make a family for her and his little daughter. He was trying to help his family and he [the alleged shooter] hurt it. He brek it up man,” one upset neighbour said.
Meantime, the owner of the bar, who did not want to give his name, said he was caught off guard by Friday morning’s incident outside his establishment.
“I heard a bang and I thought that it was that someone had thrown a bottle. I didn’t know someone had been shot till I heard the screaming.”
Robinson’s grieving mother Marcia Franklin never expected that she would lose her third born on his birthday.
“Somebody call me early Friday morning and tell me that Colston dead. I say, ‘how yuh mean that Colston dead?’ The say, ‘I tell yuh he dead, dead, dead’. When I went down there, de boy did pun de ground there laying down. He did still warm. If he did get to the hospital quick enough he would have probably still make it,” she said recounting the incident.
Noting that police had called the ambulance, she said “when it arrived, one of the ambulance men said that they had a pulse . . . but given the time it tek to get he down there, the doctor said he couldn’t make it because he had the bullet right in his forehead,” she said, pleading at the same time for the authorities to address the gun crime that has been gripping the island.
The distraught Franklin, who said she was barely “hanging in”, added that her main concern now was her two-year-old granddaughter who Robinson has left behind.
“I here now worried bout that little child that he now gone long there and left. . . . A little child gine two years in October. I gotta be father and mother for that little child now. The only child that he got,” the grieving mother said.