Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 2nd 2017 Contents were no concerns on my part or
my parents whether or not it was
safe for me to play with my peers,
irrespective of which street they
My teenage years were no differ-
ent. Enterprise people love to party
and would find any excuse to do so.
The entire community and environs
would come together and there
would be massive street parties or
I had so much fun when there were
community events in Dass Trace,
Crown Trace, African Grounds or
Bhagaloo Street and I would attend
these events without fear of being
shot or hurt because rivalling streets
"warring" or anything to that effect.
Like any other community, we
would be hit with criminal activ-
ity, but it wasn't the norm. As I'm
older I now understand that there
was always a drug dealing problem
in the area however, I can't remem-
ber there being this many murders at
any given time back then. Gang vi-
olence of this magnitude only really
erupted within the last three years.
I live on Bhagaloo Street. The ep-
icentre of the current gang war is
actually between Bhagaloo Street
(the alleged Rasta City hub) and
Crown Trace, home of the "Unru-
ly Isis" crew. Most of the streets in
Enterprise are connected and even
I am at a loss sometimes since the
lines are blurred as to where each
gangs' territory starts and ends. For
instance, I know many self-pro-
claimed Unruly Isis members who
live in Walcott Lane which is an off-
shoot of Bhagaloo Street. It's all very
confusing and very stupid.
I can't remember the last time I
felt happiness, excitement or any
positive emotion that was the result
of some experience in Enterprise. It
actually makes me very sad to say
that because I love my community
and the people who live here howev-
er, nothing about Enterprise inspires
me to smile.
Last year, I felt proud of my com-
munity when Nigel Paul, who is
from Enterprise, represented our
country at the Olympics. That was
a good moment for our community.
Other than that, I can't recall feel-
ing anything other than profound
anxiety, fear, hopelessness, disap-
pointment and sometimes anger.
WHEN ROBOCOP WAS KILLED
I am no longer shocked by any-
thing that happens here. Things that
I never thought would happen here
have already occurred. Maybe the
most shocking might be Robocop's
murder. As someone who grew up
here, we all grew to be very wary
of that man.
He was very charismatic but we
knew he was dangerous. Everyone
frequented his grocery store and we
all thought the last place he'd meet
his demise was there. It was his fort,
so to speak. So when I heard he was
murdered, along with his friend and
the alleged Isis perpetrator, it was
You see, all those Unruly Isis
members were at some point un-
der Robocop, we all knew it. Most
of Unruly Isis were known to be lim-
ing at Robocop's. I saw them my-
self. When they split from Robocop
because of conflicting ideologies I
never expected that they would gar-
ner the power to do what they did.
Everyone underestimated their
strength and how radicalised they
were in their ideology. When they
murdered Robocop, who I and
everyone else thought was un-
touchable, we knew that no one
was safe here.
At least I knew that. Robocop,
who many consider the most dan-
gerous man in Enterprise, was mur-
dered by an Unruly Isis member and
it was at that point I stopped being
nalve and acknowledged how strong
the Unruly unit really was. I think
this even made me finally accept
that there was a real war occurring
in my community and that Enter-
prise was under siege. I started being
a lot more afraid for myself, family
and friends after that.
STREETS FILLED WITH DRUGS
Enterprise is a known drug hub.
There are blocks set up in all the ma-
jor streets in the area like Bhagaloo
Street, Crown Trace and Enterprise
Street, just to name the more pop-
ular blocks. Hence, it is no surprise
that these three areas have seen
the most gang-related violence.
Drugs have been one of the main
contributing factors to the vio-
lence in these areas. All these gang
members represent their block and
their turf. They all want to be the
top selling block because that would
mean more money to spread around.
Bhagaloo Street's block was very
popular and, from what I observed,
would make a lot of money when I
observed the calibre of people going
to purchase marijuana and whatev-
er else. Crown Trace gang members
felt disenfranchised because they
were not getting enough "bread"
from the amount Bhagaloo Street
was making and tensions began to
slowly rise on their end until things
eventually exploded. In those ini-
tial few months it was like a real war
zone. Men would walk around boldly
with guns and it was terrifying.
Another reason there is so much
violence is the availability of guns.
Young men have easy access to
weapons in Enterprise and are
certainly not willing to part ways
with them especially now when this
war is at its peak. Also, these guys
prefer to stay home and lime on the
block than look for a job and attain
an honest dollar to support them-
selves. My father personally tried to
help one of those young men get a
job and the morning for him to go
the interview he did not show up.
That young man was shot recently.
He escaped unscathed but is cur-
rently hiding, he is fearful for his life.
Another major contributing
factor is the so called "communi-
ty leaders" in Enterprise. Most of
these "leaders" are actually the drug
bosses who are recruiting teenag-
ers. They start indoctrinating those
boys at a young age and advertise
the benefits of the fast life culture
that typically involves money, cars,
drugs, guns and sex. My brother was
caught up by this façade as a teenag-
er, too. He eventually got some sense
and left that life and is now gainfully
employed, thank God. But it wasn't
easy for my parents to convince him
to abandon that lifestyle.
I am afraid in my own home, so
it goes without saying that I am
extremely fearful walking through
my community. On a daily basis, I
would walk out Bhagaloo Street to
get transport because it is easier for
me. On my way home, I have re-
sorted to paying a taxi to drop me
straight home and I usually direct
them through Crown Trace instead
of Bhagaloo Street.
The reason for this is because the
Government recently opened a new
HDC housing scheme (Lion's Gate)
and taxis are more willing to drop
passengers there than they are to go
in Bhagaloo Street.
I've resorted to deceiving taxi
drivers this way---they think I am
dropping off at Lion's Gate and
when I direct them otherwise and
they find themselves on the out-
skirts of Bhagaloo Street they are
usually quite annoyed with me. I've
grown accustomed to being cursed
Before I leave home I pray and ask
God to protect me. Whenever I see a
young guy riding a bike I get scared
sometimes because a lot of the gang
members use bikes to escape after
they shoot up the place. Also I hate
when cars are passing next to me
and I can't see the occupants of the
vehicle because of the dark tint. I
get really scared when that happens.
I tell myself all the time that I need
to leave this community, not only for
my sake but my family's as well. I
want my niece to grow up in a "safe"
area. I want her to feel a sense of
pride about where she comes from.
Unfortunately I do not have the fi-
nancial ability to do so. My family
and I have made a life here.
guardian.co.tt Sunday, April 2, 2017
Law abiding citizens
numb and exhausted
An investigator processes a crime scene where Patrick Isles was killed while attending a wake in Enterprise,
Chaguanas, last week. PHOTO: RISHI RAGOONATH
n From Page A5
n Continued on Page A7
NO WAY OUT FROM A
LIFE OF CRIME
---(continues in tomorrow's T&T
Next week in your Sunday
Guardian, we continue to
chronicle life in Enterprise for
ordinary, law abiding citizens.
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