Gunmen killed four relatives in Jamaica

Gunmen threw Molatov cocktails into a house in a rough area of Jamaica's capital on Wednesday, setting it ablaze and killing four relatives inside, including a 10-year-old girl, police said.

The attack in the Maxfield Avenue neighborhood of Kingston marked the latest in a spate of suspected gang violence that has gripped the capital for weeks and claimed several lives.

Armed men drove up before dawn and hurled Molatov cocktails into the concrete home, Deputy Police Superintendent Delroy Hewitt said.

When the four tried to escape from the house, the gunmen opened fire, forcing them back inside, Hewitt said. Neighbors tried to rescue the four but also came under fire from the gunmen, he said.

Police later recovered the charred remains of Gerald Brown, his wife Dorcas, their 25-year-old daughter Michelle and her 10-year-old daughter Sasha-Kay.

Authorities have no suspects in the attack, which came days after three people were shot to death in another volatile community in suspected gang violence, including an infant boy.

Jamaica is struggling with its worst violent crime wave on record. More than 1,250 people have been slain on the Caribbean island of 2.6 million since Jan. 1, compared to 1,467 in 2004.

Police blame the violence on well-armed street gangs vying for control of lucrative drug and extortion rings.

Gunfire broke out Tuesday as police and soldiers searching for the killers of three policemen in May stormed the inner-city community of Tivoli Gardens, a stronghold of the opposition Jamaica Labor Party.

Police said they came under fire from armed men, but residents said police and soldiers fired at houses randomly. Gunfire struck and injured two women, a few feet away where opposition leader Bruce Golding was talking with residents.

After the incident, opposition spokesman on security Derrick Smith suggested police were trying to kill Golding - a charge the police high command quickly denied, AP reports.

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