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Jah Cure’s rape victim speaks out

Jah Cure’s rape victim speaks out

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“Love is much more to life than just words,” are the lyrics from current popular Jamaican reggae singer, Jah Cure that everyone is bobbing their heads to.

These lyrics were chanted from behind prison walls where the singer Siccaturie “Jah Cure” Alcock,is doing time for rape. The emotions radiate from his voice, but there is one young lady who finds it disturbing to hear the reggae artiste sing about peace and love, when he has made her life a living hell. {{more}}

Six years ago, 25-year-old Suzanne Ferguson and her aunt were held up at gunpoint, robbed and raped in 1999 on a dirt road in Montego Bay. Jah Cure was convicted and sentenced to 13 years in prison and has so far has served seven years at one of Kingston’s maximum security penal institutions. He has however never admitted to having committed the crime and continues to serve time.

The ordeal began on Sunday November 8, 1998 when Suzanne, her aunt and two male cousins, were walking to the Flamingo Nightclub to play a game of pool.

Suzanne said she observed a tinted, two-door car following them and, two hours after their pool game, while on their way home, the same car drove up and blocked them.

One of the two men inside jumped out with a gun and hit one of Suzanne’s male cousins then robbed and verbally abused them both of them. The other guy in the car shouted at the gunman to ‘Kill them!’ but Suzanne pleaded with the perpetrators not to kill them. The cousins were ordered to run for their lives while Suzanne and her aunt were ordered into the back of the vehicle. While in the car, the females were questioned about their cousins and asked to identify themselves. Their jewelry was taken and the man with the gun sat on top of them, so that they were unable to see where they were being taken.

The men then drove on to a bushy, dirt track in the Spring Farm area where Suzanne and her aunt were viciously raped.

The young woman, then 19 years old, claimed that Jah Cure raped her at gunpoint, while the other man raped her aunt outside on the dirt track, in a pile of gravel. Suzanne said she begged him to use a condom and he searched in the glove compartment but none was found. Despite having a gun to her head Suzanne continued to resist Jah Cure, but he threatened to kill her if she didn’t obey.

The ladies were taken to the main road, and ordered to get out of the vehicle by the perpetrators who threw $100 on the ground and told them it was for their bus fare. Suzanne claimed she saw the same license plate that she had memorized earlier.

She recalls that, after testifying against Jah Cure, he approached her swearing that it was not he, and even introduced a pregnant woman to her saying that he was expecting a baby.

However, some time afterwards, Jah Cure’s mother (who was at the court house) told Suzanne that the woman was neither pregnant for him, neither was she his girlfriend.

Suzanne saidt she was able to identify Jah Cure because his voice was distinct. She said that he even tried to kiss her and that she could smell the ganja scent on his breath. She said that Jah Cure even tried calling her while he was in prison she said she had to go away for a while to get away but he was sending messages to her house. She said other entertainers and friends of Jah Cure tried to get her to make statements to help him get out of prison.

But Suzanne said she doesn’t money she just wants him to admit to his wrong and apologize publicly. The ordeal has tormented her. She has trouble sleeping and it has also affected her relationships with men.

“I cannot take their money and go to the supermarket and buy a pound of respect, dignity and self esteem. All that was taken from me. I have to be walking on the streets and looking behind me. My relatives are getting threats,”

Suzanne continued, “I don’t trust anyone. If they try to come close, I react very violently and if they try to get intimate, I have flashbacks and it is very difficult. It seems to me that entertainers are more valued than everybody else in Jamaica and as a woman, I feel seriously undervalued.”

While she has not undergone formal counseling, says her current church congregation helps her in the very hard times through prayer and fellowship. Much of her support also comes from good friends and the residents of her community, especially the young people who are very protective of her.

Today Jah Cure is no longer evasive about the incident, no longer forceful in his declaration of innocence. He thinks there’s a move stifle his chances of getting parole.

Prison authorities say his earliest possible release date is July 28, 2007.

He complained, “Right now me a rehabilitate and it is not a case of guilty or innocent anymore. It is all about rehabilitation and I am coming out, either or (e)ither, time is winding down.”

According to Jah Cure, he spends most of his days in prison praying and counseling other inmates and preaching.

“The only thing me sorry sey, is dat me never get to finish my schooling. Dat a de only thing me sorry bout, but a nuh my fault.”

• Taken from a Jamaican Gleaner interview.

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