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Dwayne Moses, left, a mentally ill man was shot by police in his home village, RIllan Hill on Thursday, April 13, 2023. His mother, Herlitha Moses, right, said her son was left bleeding for a long time before being taken for medical attention. (Photos" Searchlight & Facebook)
Dwayne Moses, left, a mentally ill man was shot by police in his home village, RIllan Hill on Thursday, April 13, 2023. His mother, Herlitha Moses, right, said her son was left bleeding for a long time before being taken for medical attention. (Photos” Searchlight & Facebook)
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The mother of the mentally ill man who police shot and injured in Rillan Hill on Thursday is expressing dissatisfaction with their handling of the situation.

Herlitha Moses told iWitness News that officers did not act swiftly enough to transport her son, Dwayne Moses, 26, to hospital after shooting him in his left thigh.

“If people nah cuss them and get on, they woulda leave him there to bleed to death. And that ah way ah hurt me,” Ms Moses told iWitness News.

“You shot the man, tek up the man the same time and throw him in the transport and carry him. You waiting and see so much blood pouring out and see the man there lie down nah do nothing. They shoulda handle the situation better than that because it’s more than one of them come,” she said.

Police said in a statement, on Thursday, that officers at the Questelles Police Station received a report of a mentally ill man pelting stones at persons and vehicles at Rillan Hill public road. 

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The statement said officers met Mr. Moses, 26, at the Rillan Hill public road “with stones in his hands and behaving in a very aggressive manner. The police attempted to restrain Mr. Moses and in the process, he was shot in his leg.”

Mr. Moses was taken to the Buccament Polyclinic for medical treatment before being transferred to the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital (MCMH), where he underwent surgery.

Jonathan Abraham, a 67-year-old retiree and preacher, told iWitness News separately on Friday that Mr. Moses smashed two of the windows on his vehicle as he was driving in the area.

Abraham said that an officer shot Moses who moved in to a “charge” position with stones in his hand as the officer moved in to grab him. 

However, Ms Moses said that the situation could have been averted if villagers who had seen her son pelting stone had alerted her.

She said that when she woke up on Thursday morning, she did not see at home Mr. Moses, who is also called “Chicken Back”. 

She said she told her boyfriend that it seems as if her son had not slept at home that night and her mind was on him all morning.

“But way ah vex me so much, if people dey out dey and see Back a behave in a kinda way, come cross here and call me,” Ms Moses told iWitness News.

Dwayne Moses
Police and civilians at the scene in Rillan Hill on Thursday, April 13, 2023, where police shot and injured Dwayne Moses, a mentally ill villager.

She said that she had heard that her son had broken windows on Abraham’s vehicle.

“Well, come to that. If he broke Abrie and dem window, somebody should ah come call me and I woulda go out there and see the situation and try see if I could settle things,” the mother said.

“But nobody ain’t come and call me until he get shot. That ah way a hurt me right now. Because everybody know me. Ah home me been.” 

Abraham’s vehicle was damaged as he drove along the public Road in Rillan Hill on his way home from Pembroke.

He said that when he exited the vehicle to see what had happened, Mr. Moses, who he knows very well and who sometimes comes to his house for food, charged at him with stones in his hand.

Abraham said he sought refuge in a shop nearby and used someone’s phone to call the police, who said they had already received a report about Moses pelting stones and were about to respond.

Ms Moses initially told iWitness News that it was “not true” that when Abraham came out of his vehicle that her son was going towards him with stones in his hand.

“That is not true because a lot of people who were out there say that is not true.”

Asked if she thought that Abraham would lie and say that Mr. Moses was coming at him with stones, Ms Moses said, “Well that is what the police say. But people who been out there say they ain’t see that. So, me ain’t know because me ain’t been out there. People ah come tell me all kinda story. “

She, however, told iWitness News that if Abraham said that is what happened she would believe it.

“Well, yes because dem say he been out they ah chip (having a mental breakdown), like he been ah fire stones and thing. But nobody ain’t come and tell me anything. I woulda go out there.”

Damaged vehicle
A montage image showing the damage that Abraham said Moses did to his vehicle in Rillan Hill on Thursday, April 13, 2023.

She said her son has been hospitalised at Mental Health Centre on a couple of occasions.

In the early time when he used to chip, he used to like tamper with people vehicle, like drive off their vehicle and thing,” Ms Moses further told iWitness News.

She said there had been allegations that he had damaged a window of a vehicle in the village but no one had seen him do this. 

Ms Moses said her son had undergone surgery for the gunshot injury to his left thigh and was warded at Milton Cato Memorial Hospital. 

“He is in a lot of pain right now. He can’t move around,” she told iWitness News, adding that doctors said that her son’s recovery would take some time “because close-range shot and damage ah blood vessels”.

The mother said that when she heard that her son had been shot she “couldn’t make it” to go to the scene but some of her other children did. 

She emphasised that the situation would have been averted had someone told her earlier that her son was pelting stones.

“They said he been just ah fire stone so any vehicle pass at the time –. But what I am saying, people see he with them kinda act, they ain’t even come call me. If they been come and call me, I woulda go out there and see if I could calm him down…”

She said people were not happy with the manner in which the situation was handled. 

“Everybody vex because they say he don’t make trouble. The only thing he go ask you for $2 or bread or if you have food. A lot of people give him things. 

“They have to understand he is a mental person and at some point, he will chip. Because, when they see that, they know ah chip he ah chip. Other than that, he just ah dey normal so and a smile. He just ah smile,” Ms Moses said.

Dwayne is the second of his mother’s children to be shot by police.

In December 2011, police shot and killed his older brother, Godwin Moses, 27, three weeks after he escaped from prison. 

2 replies on “Mother unhappy with police response after they shot her mentally ill son”

  1. I really feel much pity for mentally ill persons who just may not be able to control themselves. However, people need to protect themselves from crazy persons who may attack them, which could result in the mentally ill person getting injured. I have a young nephew and to tell you the truth, I will not take it lightly if a crazy man were to injure him or worse yet, kill him. I don’t wish to get violent at all but some serious strong measures will have to take place to protect myself and family. Life is precious.

  2. Peola Barbour says:

    This woman keep saying they should of call her it have to be a reason why no body call her,from the first time he started to act up.carry him to a private doctor

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