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Aug 17, 2015

Joel Bishop Stomped and Ran Over in Deadly Melee, Three Others Injured

Joel Bishop

Just before three o’clock on Saturday morning, there was an all-out brawl near the entrance to the MCC Grounds across from the Ramada Belize City Princess. Four residents from the Lake Independence area: Mark Benguche, Austin Rowland, Eugene Arana and Joel Bishop were viciously attacked by a group of men, reportedly from the Supal Street gang. Within hours, just before midday on Saturday, Bishop succumbed to the head and body injuries he received. Benguche and Arana have since been treated and released, while Rowland, who is better known as Steeno, remains in a stable condition at the K.H.M.H. A criminal and a traffic investigation are currently ongoing at the Eastern Division North Region of the Belize Police Department. Duane Moody followed this latest homicide in the city and has this report.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

On Saturday morning, following a night of entertainment at Pier One on Newtown Barracks, a massive fight broke out near the entrance to the MCC Grounds, reportedly between two rival gangs. Four men: twenty-two-year-old Mark Benguche, twenty-one-year-old Eugene Arana and twenty-eight-year-olds Austin Rowland and Joel Bishop were ambushed by a larger group of men; eyewitnesses say more than fifteen persons, sometime before three o’clock. The men, who are all from the Lake Independence Area of the city were brutally injured and rushed to the K.H.M.H. Some nine hours later, Bishop, an Oleander Street resident would succumb to his injuries.

 

Mahalia Williams

Mahalia Williams, Aunt of Joel Bishop

“The doctor di tell fi he pa that dehn di bring he out of the theatre and that he done dead; they can’t do anything for him, only his brain is functioning. So told us that we can’t really see him until eleven, when he go into the ICU; dehn wah hook up ahn and make we go see ahn again. at this time, I di meditate as to what happened because nobody knows what happened. We only hear that he gone out dah wah event out there at B.T.L. Park—he and one of wi neighbor from down the street, Austin. Ih chest mi bruk, I think ih spine…ih vital organs were all damaged, ih foot bruk and ih head. Ih get so much beating ina ih head; dehn had ih head band up though. And then the side of his face mi bruk up and then some ah ih teeth dehn come out. But during ih fight ih also see the next young man, Steeno, dehn d beat him too, but he mi di fight dehn off with some big rocks…wah other set of guys.”

 

The blood stains, shattered vehicle glass and beer bottles in the area are the telltale signs that something went awfully wrong as the men were heading home. One eyewitness spoke of what transpired.

 

Voice of: Eyewitness

“After about maybe four or five minutes of constant beating, the young man was unconscious. His male friends that were with him, they had left his side, which I don’t blame anybody because it was total chaos. The young men then moved to the gate and saw this young man in a black pickup truck and said he is from mahogany area as well. As he exited his pickup they started beating him as well. The blood stains are on the sidewalk. They beat him for about four to five minutes; constant beating.”

 

Austin Rowland

Mahalia Williams

“Bout ten ah dehn di beat this young man to dead. But dehn lone toe tap. I say dah what is that? Ih say when dehn kick yo ina yo face with the point of dehn shoes. Ih say dah lone that dehn di give that young man. And he left ina shot. Ih say dehn beat the young man, dehn pick up ahn, ih drop. Ih say but about this time, di young man done knock out. So I say what? Ih say mami bout ten man. All ah dehn walk up cross the street, walk back, stomp up him in his chest and dehn beat him to death.”

 

Police arrived minutes after the assailants fled the scene—reportedly in two getaway vehicles that were parked close by—to find an unconscious Bishop on the ground. The Eastern Division North has since launched both a criminal and a traffic investigation to determine the cause of death, a motive, however, has still not been established.

 

Dezerie Phillips

ACP Dezerie Phillips, Regional Commander, Eastern Division North

“Shortly after three a.m., police responded to a call in regards to a fight in the Newtown Barrack area where several persons were observed with varied degree of injuries. One person was lying on the ground as a result of that fight. Reportedly a vehicle sped off from the area and ran over this person that was lying on the ground. Of the five persons that were injured, one is Joel Bishop, twenty-eight years and he suffered head and body injuries. All persons were transported to the K.H.M.H. some nine hours after, Joel succumbed to his injuries.”

 

But was the murder in retaliation for an incident that occurred in the same area two weeks ago involving PIV and Supal Street gang members? The family says that Bishop was not affiliated with any gang and wants justice.

 

Mahalia Williams

“I pray to the god of justice that we get some justice in the death of fi we nephew because he didn’t deserve to die like that. And I noh think no human under the almighty hands have the right to kill nobody like that.”

 

But was there poor police response to the incident? The GSU headquarters is a block away from where the incident took place. According to Assistant Commissioner of Police Dezerie Phillips, several strategies are in place.

 

ACP Dezerie Phillips

“We had a mobile patrol within the area. As a matter of fact, the police mobile that had responded, that was in the immediate area, transported Mister Bishop and tow of the other persons to the hospital. Not only since this weekend, but we have actually prior to increased police presence in different areas that we believe are areas that will be affected by crime. As a matter of fact, you will see if you go around the city, mounted vehicular checkpoints at the northern approach of the four bridges and that is one of the strategies that we’ve put into place over the past weekend.”

 

Police have since impounded two vehicles and detained several persons who remain in custody as investigations continue. Duane Moody for News Five.

 

The police department is asking for anyone with information to come forward and contact the nearest police station or crime stopper at 0-800-922-TIPS. 

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4 Responses for “Joel Bishop Stomped and Ran Over in Deadly Melee, Three Others Injured”

  1. Corrupted Belize says:

    Something needs to be done about all the viciousness and hard core killings that has been taking place in our country… we can’t blame everything on the government but the police is as corrupted and not doing anything to give justice to the people of our country.
    These young men are going around just taking people’s lives like it’s hunting season and they have the right…. what the heck is going on??
    I believe in order for the crime and violence to be cleaned up the police, prosecutors, DPP, Lawyers, have to work hand in hand to make Belize safe again… either that or we have to write in to higher council-abroad to bring back hanging. .. OUR POLICE SYSTEM IS A JOKE, PARENTS ARE ALSO FAILING THEIR CHILDREN, THEY’RE NOT BEING RAISED AND DISCIPLINED LIKE BEFORE, THEY’RE BEING DRAGGED UP, THE CHILDREN COMING THESE DAYS ARE EVIL AND HEARTLESS…. OPEN UNU EYES BELIZEANS, THE HUMAN LIFE SEEMS TO BE WORTHLESS TO THESE YOUTHS, OBVIOUSLY SOMETHING HAS TO BE DONE

  2. Timber says:

    You’re so right. The police officers are a big joke. Eighty percent of them are illiterate and they only worsened the situation with their actions. They can’t even solve a simple robbery and tell people, including one of my relatives, after several break-ins maybe they should take all the stuff out their house. They know how to kick down people’s doors though. As for you, Dezerie Phillips, maybe you should spend less time on your cell phone and holding personal grievances against fellow officers and do your damn job. I’m not going by rumours and innuendos, I’ve seen you in action a couple times while visiting Belize, including earlier this year when an arrest was made and you were at home , supposedly sick. The officers already realized that they had made a mistake because they arrested everyone who was in the home at the time and when you discovered that the innocent people involved were relatives to someone in the force you didn’t like, you called in and told the officers to still detain those people. Karma is a bitch though. Be careful. I feel so sorry for you people in Belize because you all are still so oblivious to a lot of things in that country.

  3. John smith says:

    This guy is not innocent, he killed Carey the store owner

  4. De Requena says:

    10 years ago this year Sept. 4 they did the same to my brother. Nobody served any time they all walked and laugh. The laughter was belly hearted. My brother did not derserved what they did to him either.
    Look at them know. they want to cry on God now. Jersha is right, Vengence is the Lord and he has exacted his vengence for what they did to Sherwin Requena 10 years ago. The Lord did not forgot them. Joesph Bishop and Darrien Banks’ turn are coming too. All of them will HAVE TO ANSWER TO THE GOD OF VENGENCE. Don’t cry now. This is the Lord’s doing, he did not forgot them. Sup. Chester Williams too who provided the murder weapon to Darrien Banks. Dickie Bradley who coached them and made sure they walked. It’s you all turn now, that’s all!

    Now you all know how I felt. It had been a long time coming.

    “Gang of 6 Charged for Sherwin Requena Murder
    posted (September 7, 2005)
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    Meanwhile investigators have arrested a total of six men for Sunday night’s murder of University of Belize Librarian Sherwin Requena near his home on Zacaranda Street. Police say 21-year-old Evan Neal and 17 year old Edward Lord allegedly committed the murder. They have since been charged with murder and conspiracy to commit murder. Police have also charged 18-year-old Joel Bishop, 19-year-old Joseph Bishop, 27-year-old Darren Banks, and a 16 year old minor with conspiracy to commit murder. We note that all the alleged co-conspirators reside on Oleander Street which is where the deceased lived.

    CIB Chief Williams says it wasn’t a hit nor was it gang related, but it was a well-planned execution.

    ASP Chester Williams, C.I.B. Commander
    “In connection with the one on Sunday night, again we don’t have any motive to say that these shootings are gang related, none at all, but whether as we’ve mentioned previously in another interview that it is just people who want to be following people, going on another person’s instruction to go and commit crime. At this point in time I wouldn’t want to say who is the actual person who pulled the trigger but the reason why they were both charged for murder is that in law there is something called joint enterprise whereby if you and that person are together and you go to commit an act, and because of the fact that you are with that individual and he commits that act and you do nothing to try and prevent him from executing his act, then that becomes joint enterprise and hence the reason why they were both charged with murder jointly.”

    Janelle Chanona, News 5
    “Are you confident with the evidence you have that you used to charge these people will hold in court?”

    ASP Chester Williams,
    “We do not believe in statistical arrests and I’m not the judge or the jurors of the Supreme Court but I can assure the public that the evidence that we have is overwhelming evidence that we could put before a court with jurors and I’m certain that we could get a conviction.”

    We note that Darren Banks is also facing a charge of abetment to commit murder. Evan Neal and Edward Lord will also have to answer charges of attempted murder and dangerous harm on Dona Cayetano who was shot during the spray of bullets on Sunday evening. All six appeared in Magistrate’s Court today and were remanded to the Hattieville Prison until October 21st.

    CIB Commander Chester Williams says that his team is declaring war on gun violence. Williams warned that any gun related offense will be investigated and the offenders will be dealt with.”

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