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31 murders

By ALEXANDER BRUZUAL Saturday, January 18 2014

click on pic to zoom in
CRIME SCENE: Crime scene officers search for evidence at the scene in Phase Seven, La Horquetta where Dion Mitchell, 27, (INSET) was fatally shot on T...
CRIME SCENE: Crime scene officers search for evidence at the scene in Phase Seven, La Horquetta where Dion Mitchell, 27, (INSET) was fatally shot on T...

THE murder toll jumped to 31 for the year following the death of three men in separate incidents in Belmont, La Horquetta and Rio Claro. The latest incident took place at about 9.15 pm on Thursday in La Horquetta, less than a day after 19-year-old Jabari Thompson was gunned down in similar circumstances.

Police reported on Thursday night, Dion Mitchell, 27, of Phase Seven in La Horquetta was liming in the gallery of Everil Gibbs’ home at Toni Goviah Avenue, Phase Seven when residents heard several gunshots.

On checking, residents found both Gibbs and Mitchell lying on the road bleeding from gunshot wounds. The police and emergency health services were notified and the two men were rushed to the Arima District Health Facility. Mitchell, who was shot multiple times, succumbed to his injuries shortly after arrival.

Gibbs who was shot in his chest was transferred to the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex (EWMSC) where up to press time he remained warded in critical condition. At the Forensic Science Centre in St James yesterday, Mitchell’s relatives described the father of two as an “ambitious” person as they added having no idea why anyone would want Mitchell dead.

“He was employed as a cook at Popeye’s in Grand Bazaar. He was currently on leave because he got injured on the job. He worked hard to provide for his family, especially his children. Right now, our family is in a state of shock because we don’t understand why Dion was killed. “What makes it worse, the day he died was his mother’s birthday. He was the apple of her eye. So she above all others is in a real state. She has not handled it well at all,” said Mitchell’s sister.

About three hours before Mitchell was killed, 27-year-old Clevon Manswell was gunned down by unknown assailants in an unrelated incident in Belmont.

Police reported at about 6.15 pm on Thursday, Manswell of Hermitage Road, Belmont, went with a friend to meet a group of persons along Belmont Circular Road. For unknown reasons, Manswell exited the vehicle and was standing alongside the car, when another vehicle, with two occupants, pulled alongside.

Without warning, the occupants of the second car shot Manswell multiple times, before speeding off. Manswell’s friends rushed him to Port-of-Spain General Hospital where the shot man succumbed to his injuries.

Manswell’s brother yesterday described him as a hard working person and he could not understand why he was killed. “I don’t know if they meant to go after his friend or what. People take you down roads you are not supposed to go and that’s why you are supposed to watch the company you keep,” the brother said.

At about the same time as Manswell was being shot, Southern Division Police were responding to the report of a body being found along Pinder Trace in Rio Claro. Police reported that at about 6.30 pm on Thursday, a woman was walking along Pinder Trace when she noticed a large number of corbeaux (black vultures) circling over her neighbour’s home. On investigating, the woman saw the partially decomposed body of her neighbour, 60-year-old Abass Mohammed.

She notified the police and a party of officers from the Southern Division and the Homicide Bureau of Investigations visited the scene. An autopsy at the Forensic Science Centre confirmed Mohammed was stabbed to death.

“He was a farmer. He never interfered with anybody. His death comes as a shock to us all. We are clueless. He had one or two incidents where we think he told us people interfered with his livestock, but nothing to the extent that he would be killed,” stated a female relative. No arrests have been made in these three murders and investigations are continuing.

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