One man was killed and three injured Saturday night in a pair of shooting incidents that took place on St. Croix.
The V.I. Police Department said the deceased man was identified by next of kin as Denver Charlery, age 34 of Mount Pleasant. It was the 12th homicide on St. Croix since the beginning of the year, the 15th in the territory, according to the Source homicide list.*
At a press briefing Sunday afternoon, at the Anne Heyliger Vegetable Market in Frederiksted, Chief of Police for the St. Croix District Sidney Elskoe provided updates on a difficult night.
The first incident occurred at about 11:30 p.m., Saturday, Elskoe said. The 911 emergency call center received reports of a shooting outside of the Karma Gentlemen’s Club at the Galloway Building in Estate Diamond, just off the Melvin Evans Highway in the vicinity of the Sunny Isle Shopping Center. That individual, later identified as Charlery, received multiple gunshot wounds to his upper body. He was transported to Juan F. Luis Hospital, where he died as a result of his wounds.
The second incident occurred around 11:59 p.m. The 911 emergency call center received a report of shots fired at the Anne Heyliger Vegetable Market in Frederiksted, just about 100 yards from where Sunday’s news conference was held. Detectives arriving at the scene found three individuals who had sustained injuries. Police reported that the three would survive those injuries.
“Today we have decided to change things a bit,” Elskoe said. “We have moved our typical press conference out of the office and into the community. The purpose of that is to show everyone that we are here, and we are with you. The message that we want to send is that we must work together.”
Prior to the press conference, VIPD officers were seen posting signs around the Anne Heyliger Vegetable Market that read, “No Loitering, Police Enforced.” Elskoe said he received several questions about the signs and reassured neighbors, “Selling fruit and vegetables is absolutely not loitering.”
“I think this is a location, and I will speak freely, that everybody knows is a location that you come to buy drugs,” Elskoe said, referring to the market square.
Elskoe said no firearms were recovered from either scene, but ballistics indicated several different types of weapons had been used.
“They appeared to be high-powered rifles,” he said.
Lt. Leslie Williams discussed plans for increased police presence in the area.
“One thing we plan on doing is getting as much saturated patrolling in the Frederiksted town area,” Williams said. “We also have other areas to cover, but the town area has to be safe, and we have to do whatever we can to make sure that happens.”
Asked by the Source what the plans are for patrolling the market, Elskoe said, “What we plan to do is have regular traffic of police cars in this area. A mobile command will be stationed in the parking lot.”
Asked if there are any updates on any of the other homicides that have occurred on St. Croix, Elskoe said, “Our Criminal Investigation Bureau is feverishly working on the cases, and you will see updates with some of them in the near future.”
*The Source homicide list is based on reports from the V.I Police Department, but unlike the police listing and some other media, the Source does not include suicides or vehicular homicides, which can cause a difference in total incidents reported.