MURDERS IN BEETHAM, MALABAR, LA PUERTA
By Nalinee Seelal Sunday, January 13 2013
Four persons were shot dead between 5.15 am and 3.15 pm yesterday pushing the murder toll to ten for the year.
Deputy Police Commissioner Mervyn Richardson, who is in charge of crime, told Sunday Newsday, he was alarmed by these murders, saying that security measures will be put in place in the affected areas.
“I feel deflated by the events over the past 24 hours but I cannot give up and at this time we are working feverishly with all our stakeholders that there is no further escalation in these unwanted killings.
“To that extent all law enforcement agencies are working together to have a security blanket over all communities where homicides are occurring at this time,” he said in a telephone interview. Yesterday’s latest victim was a 24-year-old Beetham man. A large contingent of police officers cordoned off several parts of Beetham Estate in search of the lone gunman who shot dead Kevin Brown, a 24-year-old man and injured soldier Chermarkie Jackman in the left foot before escaping. Police reports state that at about 3.15 pm, the victim was sitting near Main Street and Second Street, Beetham when the lone gunman walked up to him and shot him several times at point blank range.
As Brown, of Third Street, Beetham Estate slumped to the ground, the gunman began running away in the direction of a group of men who were liming nearby. The killer fired shots at the group of men, shooting Lance Corporal Jackman of Diego Martin in the left foot.
It is not clear what the soldier was doing in Beetham Estate or whether he was armed at the time. Jackson was taken to the Port-of-Spain General Hospital by police officers.
Police officers led by Acting ASP Ajith Persad and including Corporals Sankar, Marcellin as well as officers of the homicide bureau and District Medical Officer Dr Aruna Singh visited the scene and the body of Brown was ordered removed to the Forensic Science Centre. At the scene of the murder yesterday, Emrold Brown, father of the dead man, said he could not understand why his son was killed as he stared at the lifeless body of his son. He said Kelvin had been living in Tobago for the past 14 years and worked there as a plumber. He said his son was feeling homesick and came home to spend time with his mother Carleen Fleary for the Christmas holidays.
“My son was not involved in any gang neither was he a target of any criminal, so I am at a loss for words as to why my child was killed and I am demanding justice for his death,” he said, calling on the police to get to the bottom of the murder. His wife, Fleary, the deceased man’s mother, cried, also crying out for justice to be done. Also yesterday, two men of Malabar were shot dead at about 5 am. The bullet-riddled bodies of the two men, ages 21 and 23, were discovered close to a house they were occupying shortly after 5.20 am yesterday. Neighbours of the two men claimed that they had often seen the two victims in company with a third man but up until yesterday that person could not be accounted for.
At about 5.20 am yesterday, police responded to a report of gunshots at Mahogany Drive, Malabar. When officers arrived on the scene they found the bullet-riddled bodies of Mark Joseph 21, and Keron Bickaroo, 23.
The two men were later identified by relatives. Police believe that Joseph may have been shot dead by the third occupant of the house where the men were staying and a search was carried out for him yesterday, to no avail. Bickaroo, police say, had gone to buy a cigarette and was shot while on his way back to the house. A party of officers led by Inspector Wayne Baptiste and officers of the North Eastern Division visited the scene and the bodies were ordered removed to the Forensic Science Centre.
The blood bath continued when, at about 2.30 am, Marvin Harewood, a 31-year-old man of Riverside Drive, La Puerta, Diego Martin was shot several times after attending a fete.
Police reports state Harewood was shot as he drove up to his home shortly after 2.30 am yesterday.
He was pronounced dead on arrival at the St James Infirmary.
Harewood had earlier attended a Carnival fete in Chaguaramas with his 25-year-old girlfriend.
When the couple arrived at Harewood’s home at about 2.30 am, two men armed with guns began firing in Harewood’s direction. He was struck in the head and several parts of the body while his girlfriend suffered gunshot injuries to the chest.
As the gunmen fled the scene, neighbours and relatives rushed to the bullet-riddled car and found Harewood slumped over the steering wheel and his girlfriend with a gunshot wound to the chest.
Harewood was rushed to the St James Infirmary where he was pronounced dead while his girlfriend is now warded in a serious but stable condition at the Port-of-Spain General Hospital.
Police investigators told Sunday Newsday that their information is that Harewood was a member of the La Puerta gang which was under the direct control of a deceased gang leader who was known as “Sugars”.
Police investigators also said Harewood was a suspect in several shootings and gang- related activities. “He had a very colourful life,” said a senior police officer yesterday.
A party of officers led by Senior Superintendent Ishmael David, and including ASPs Patterson, Ramlochan, Inspectors Dan, Thomas, John, Saunders and others visited the scene. Officers from the Homicide Bureau are continuing investigations.