KINGSTON, Jamaica — Masked men torched a police station and traded gunfire with security forces in a patchwork of barricaded slums in Jamaica's capital Sunday, prompting the government to declare a state of emergency.
Sporadic gunshots rang out in gritty West Kingston where defiant supporters of Christopher "Dudus" Coke, a Jamaican "don" sought by the U.S. on drug and arms trafficking charges, turned his Tivoli Gardens neighborhood and other areas into a virtual fortress with trashed cars and barbed wire.
In barricaded Hannah Town, close to Tivoli Gardens, black smoke spiraled into the sky from a police station set aflame by molotov cocktails.
Officers fled the burning station in impoverished West Kingston, where a 2001 standoff between gunmen and security forces killed 25 civilians as well as a soldier and a constable
The Jamaica Constabulary Force reported one wounded Sunday: a police officer hit in the hand by gunfire.
Police said the attacks by gangsters roaming the streets with high-powered guns and improvised weapons were unprovoked. It called for all "decent and law-abiding citizens" in the troubled areas to immediately evacuate their homes and said security forces would ferry them out safely.