Special Police Unit to Seek Hijackers of Tourist Bus
KINGSTON, Jamaica (AP) _ Police created a special team and appealed for help from the public Tuesday in their search for four gunmen who stopped a tourist bus and then killed the Jamaican driver and wounded an American woman.
Private groups offered a $3,636 reward for information leading to the capture and conviction of the four.
Police Commissioner Herman Ricketts said he had assigned a special team of detectives to find the men who took over the bus early Monday as the tourists were being driven to their hotels from the Montego Bay airport.
The driver, 40-year-old Radcliff Scott, was shot and his body tossed onto the road, police said, and the woman was wounded in the arm by the same bullet that killed Scott.
Washington Times editorial staffer Mark Klugmann, who was aboard the bus, identified the woman as Laura Eiseman of Baltimore, Md. He said she was treated at a local hospital and then returned to Baltimore.
Klugmann, in an article in the Washington Times, said the bus was stopped by the gunmen in a white car. After robbing the tourists of their jewelry, cash and other valuables the gang drove the bus about a half a mile and then fled into a canefield, according to Klugmann and police.
Klugmann said Paul Schaeffer, a shop owner in the Georgetown area of Washington, D.C., drove the bus 36 miles to the town of Negril where the group contacted police.
The tourists, including 10 from the Washington area, had arrived at Montego Bay shortly after midnight on a flight from Baltimore, Klugmann wrote.
Montego Bay’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the In-Bond Merchants Association offered the reward.
Jamaican tourism officials on Tuesday visited the victims in their hotels, where arrangements were made for them to stay free of charge.
″These few lawless elements are not representative of the Jamaican society and the majority of us truly welcomes the visitors to our country,″ Tourism Minister Hugh Hart said.
The Jamaica Tourist Board offered the victims clothing and other necessities and an all-expenses paid vacation if they return to Jamaica.
This Caribbean island was visited by about 700,000 tourists last year.