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Sep 25, 2014

Tourism Police Officer Killed at Caracol

Danny Conorquie

A nineteen year old Tourism Police Officer has been gunned down near the Mayan site of Caracol, located in the Cayo District. Danny Conorquie was assigned to the San Ignacio Station, but was on rotational duties in Caracol along with one other officer. The incident is already sending shockwaves through the community, since it is alleged that Conorquie was murdered by purported Guatemalan encroachers in the area. It happened just after midday, when B.D.F. got a radio call for assistance from the officers who had come under fire near Caracol. By the time they responded half an hour later, Conorquie was dead. Details are still emerging as Scenes of Crime and CIB personnel process the scene. Mike Rudon has been following the tragic and senseless death of the young officer and has the story.

 

Mike Rudon, Reporting

At news time tonight, family members of nineteen year old Tourism Police Officer Danny Conorquie are in San Ignacio awaiting his body. The young man was shot near Caracol, located two and a half hours out of San Ignacio Town. Following an exchange of communication with soldiers on site, Chief of Staff Lieutenant Colonel Raymond Shepherd the incident.

 

Raymond Shepherd

Lt. Col. Raymond Shepherd, Chief of Staff, Belize Defence Force

“I can confirm that around twelve ten pm earlier this afternoon we received a message via radio of an engagement between the tourism police and some men of Hispanic descent in the Hispanic area. What happened initially as I understood it is that the Tourism Police radioed into the forestry outpost in Tapir, and their request was that they had captured five horses and the men were firing at them, and they were requesting backup. We had a patrol in the immediate area, and that patrol reached the area at about twelve fifty-one and upon reaching there they were informed of the exchange of fire and they swept the area and found the lifeless body of one of the Tourism Police. He received three gunshot wounds to the left side of his face. The other Tourism Policeman informed our patrol that the men removed the shotgun from the Police and made good their escape in a westerly direction towards Guatemala.”

 

There are only two tourism Police Officers stationed at Caracol on a permanent basis, and they are assisted by regular B.D.F. presence. The jungle surrounding the Mayan Site is a hotspot for Guatemalan illegals who use the land to farm and harvest crops and xate. There have been altercations in the area before, but in this case it turned deadly, and the B.D.F. arrived too late to intervene.

 

 

Lt. Col. Raymond Shepherd

“We do routine patrols in the area and each and every day when there are tourists in that location the B.D.F. escorts them to and from the Caracol monument. We also do patrols from our Tapir Base at least once a week, and we have routine patrols that go in once a week from other locations. So in any one week we would have two patrols in the area, in addition to the escort we provide on a daily basis.”

 

Because of the nature of the incident and the context of the Belize/Guatemala dispute, the murder will be addressed on an official and diplomatic level.

 

Lt. Col. Raymond Shepherd

“Our normal procedure is to pass on information through our Ministry to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and they would do what is called a protest notice, and they would have the O.A.S. come in and do verification.”

 

The B.D.F. continues to sweep the immediate area in the search for the men who gunned down Tourism Police Office Danny Conorquie. Mike Rudon for News Five.

 

A release from Police Press Officer Raphael Martinez late this evening states that Conorquie approached two Hispanic men on horseback, and they opened fire on him before fleeing the scene. According to Martinez, the entire incident was witnessed by tourists and tour operators, who were removed from the scene by the Belize Tourism Board. The release assures the general public that additional security personnel have been deployed to the site. 

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8 Responses for “Tourism Police Officer Killed at Caracol”

  1. Louisville, Ky. says:

    The killing of military or civilians at our remote areas along the western border and archeological sites was a tragedy just waiting to happen. You have to hold the head of our security forces responsible for their lack of foresight and vision. How could they not have foreseen this happening?
    It is tragic that one of our own lost his life in the line of duty but had it been a foreign tourist, that would have signaled the death of the industry as far as visits to Characol is concerned.
    It goes without saying, that along the western border,is where much more booths are needed on the ground. And since we got all this money and a robust economy the Man boasted about the other day, he needs to order a couple helicopters to get the patrols in and out of the jungle and up and down the border line quickly and efficiently.
    As if we haven’t lost enough of our natural resources to poaching, now we have lost one of our most precious resource…a security officer in the line of duty.
    It is common knowledge that the Jewel has what a lot of foreigners crave and they will stop at nothing to get it and this includes but is not limited to the killing of anyone who stands in the way.
    You have to do something Mister Man….and I mean more than just a state funeral.
    My condolences to his bereaved loved ones.

  2. Concerned! says:

    i can bet now that Foreign Minister will not fight for this man because it is not his brother…

  3. Mike says:

    Too little too late now sadly a young man is dead. The police, BDF, and BTB have known about this dangerous situation for years and have, as usual, addressed it in an inadequate manner. Putting poorly trained and equipped officers into harms way is totally negligent on their behalf. This young officer’s blood is on their hands and they should be held accountable but as we all know, there is no accountability with the GOB. And the bad guys slide back into Guat. with their Xate, and timber and now another weapon to add to their arsenal.

  4. Sad says:

    When anyone of our security forces are killed, we want a leader that will demand justice irregardless who the suspects are!! the message that this would not be tolerated and the perpetrators will be sought out to the full extent of the law. not a passive dismissive attitude like that of the foreign minister…shame on him. I hate him now! what kind of nonchalant attitude is that?

  5. MEM says:

    I am so upset, Foreign Minister Elrington is trying so hard to convince him self that the KILLER was not Guatemalan. Why? what is he so afraid of?, everyday members of our security forces put them selves in harms way to keep us safe,the least we can do is speare the family the insults of dismissing the serviving eye witness’s story. Minister Elrington we want and demand justice.

  6. lova girl says:

    hope the prime minister pays his family like how he payed the guatemalian family the last time wen a BDF shot one of there love one.now a belizean has been kill……….look out fu dem the same way MR.Barrow…………

  7. A concern Belizean says:

    Another sad day in Belize, one young life lost,we need to match these murderers with the same force.

  8. jamal borrow says:

    Belize don’t have The man power to go to war wit Guatemala.

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