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Jamaica capture Caribbean Cup in shootout win over Trinidad & Tobago; Union’s Andre Blake makes key save

Jamaica captured the sixth Caribbean Cup title in the country’s history on Tuesday evening, defeating Trinidad & Tobago 4-3 in a penalty shootout after a 0-0 draw, much to the delight of the home fans in Montego Bay.

Philadelphia Union goalkeeper Andre Blake made a key save in the shootout, denying Soca Warriors captain Kenwyne Jones in the first round to stake his side to an early lead. Though D.C. United forward Michael Seaton missed his penalty for Jamaica, a miss from Khaleem Hyland on the final kick gave Jamaica the title.

Orlando City midfielder Kevin Molino and Houston Dynamo defender Jermaine Taylor converted their shootout attempts for T&T and Jamaica, respectively.

The victory guarantees the Reggae Boyz a berth in the 2016 Copa America Centenario, in addition to the 2015 Gold Cup place they earned by making the Caribbean Cup final four. Jamaica and Trinidad & Tobago will be joined in next summer’s Gold Cup by Cuba and Haiti, while fifth-placed French Guiana will face Honduras for the remaining spot up for grabs.

A number of MLS players featured for both finalists throughout the tournament, with Blake, Seaton and Taylor joined on the Jamaica squad by Alvas Powell (Portland Timbers), Je-Vaughn Watson (FC Dallas), Darren Mattocks (Vancouver Whitecaps) and Deshorn Brown (Colorado Rapids). On the T&T side, MLS was represented by Molino and Kevan George (Columbus Crew SC), as well as recently-released ex-Whitecaps center back Carlyle Mitchell.

Mattocks and Molino, along with Haiti’s Kervens Belfort, finished as the tournament’s top scorers with three goals apiece over four games.

Assaults on Jamaica Police Officers Up by More Than 40 Percent

The number of attacks on police officers in the 103rd Precinct this year has increased by more than 40 percent, officials said.

The news comes weeks after a man attacked police officers with a hatchet and another officer was attacked with a crowbar by a robber in the neighborhood.

According to police statistics through Nov. 13, 36 officers have been assaulted this year in the 103rd Precinct, an increase of 44 percent compared with the same period last year, when 25 officers were assaulted.

“There is nothing definitive behind the increase, but it is something that we are experiencing right now,” said Deputy Inspector John Cappelmann, commanding officer of the 103rd Precinct, at a recent community council meeting.

The majority of assaults took place when suspects resisted arrest, Cappelmann said. Most did not result in serious injuries.

The most highly publicized incident occurred on Oct. 23, when Zale Thompson, 32, who police said was inspired by radical Islamic groups, attacked four rookie officers posing for a photo on Jamaica Avenue near 162nd Street, hitting Officer Kenneth Healey, 24, in the head with a metal hatchet.

He also wounded Officer Joseph Meeker, 25, in the right arm with another blow.

Meeker was treated and released from the hospital shortly after the attack.

But Healey, who underwent surgery on the day of the attack and is currently recovering at home, will require another surgery in three to six months, Cappelmann said.

“Considering how grievous his injuries were, his recovery so far has been nothing less than miraculous,” Cappelmann said.

“The first thing he asked when he woke up from surgery was if he could still be a police officer.”

Less than three weeks after that attack, another officer, Gobin Raghunath, was struck in the head with a crowbar while he and another lawman were responding to a burglary in progress on Nov. 10, at a house on 142nd Street near 109th Avenue.

“The guy came running down the stairs at full speed at the officers,” Cappelmann said. “He struck one of the officers in the head with a metal crowbar.”

Raghunath was rushed to Jamaica Hospital, and released the same day after getting several stitches, police said.

“It was difficult for our precinct to go through this again,” Cappelmann said.

In April, the inspector said, two officers were also injured after an unlicensed livery cab driver attempted to flee officers and struck them instead. The officers were not seriously hurt, Cappelmann said.

8 things you might not know about Jamaica

Unless you’ve been stuck in a mine shaft or visiting a distant planet for the past few decades, chances are you’ve heard of Bob Marley and Usain Bolt and can identify both as the most famous sons of Jamaican soil.

Beyond reggae and track icons, however, there are many fascinating things less widely known about “Jamrock” that make this island of just 3 million people stand out.

Here are eight things to know for starters:

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PHOTOS: Inner Circle Keeps Jamaican Roots Alive With Performance At The 13th Annual Jerk Fest

It was raining and it was thunderstorming all day Sunday, but that didn’t stop thousands of South Floridians from showing out to the 13th Annual Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival, which is the biggest Caribbean food festival in America. Miami-based reggae legends Inner Circle and brought the traditional authentic roots reggae vibe to the crowd of thousands of attendees.

We ran into Felicia Monet of 99 Jamz and we got introduced to some OG’s in the reggae world – all in while, eating some of the best jerk-inspired dishes in Miami and Ft. Lauderdale from over 40 food vendors with jerk chicken, jerk crabs, jerk popcorn, and jerk ice cream to name a few. VP Records also had a great exhibition with various installations and photos showing the last 25 years of VP Records history.

And as far as the performances, we got to see a great 45 minute set by legendary group Inner Circle and the crowd was there listening to every minute of their set…umbrellas and all. We have tons of photos below from their show in case you missed out. Enjoy!