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February 1, 2014
Star News


Sleeping with the dead

Crystal Harrison, Staff Reporter

Commuters in the Half-Way Tree area are complaining about the idle and homeless men sleeping on or in between the graves of the cemetery at the St Andrew Parish Church

The church is one of the oldest in the country and has a large membership. However, the issue lies with the cemetery where persons have been loitering and possibly carrying out illegal acts

THE STAR understands that at nights, men have been using the cemetery as a sleeping area. In addition, it's reported that some persons have been urinating and even defecating in the graveyard.

"When you are alive people don't have respect for you, likewise when you dead. Di bwoy dem do all manner of tings over dat cemetery at nights. I travel through Half-Way Tree almost every day, and sometimes you can almost guarantee to see a man jumping over di wall," a commuter said.

A bus driver who operates in the Half-Way Tree area told THE STAR that he is aware of men sleeping, urinating and even defecating in the cemetery.

Stench of urine

"You just need to walk past the wall, and you will smell the stench of urine and sometimes even mess. Dem people yah don't have no respect for property," the driver said.

Operations manager of the church, Merle Thomas, said that they are aware of the issue and they are trying to combat the problem.

"I have been told that persons are sleeping over there. I haven't seen them for myself but I have been told," Thomas told THE STAR.

She also said that despite even security on the property, that has not stopped the loitering and littering, "The walls have been raised. I don't know if it can be raised any higher, and we have guards on the premises, but we haven't really come up with a real solution," Thomas said.

Efforts by THE STAR yesterday to get a comment from the Half-Way Tree police about the issues in the cemetery proved futile.

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