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Mar 29, 2005

Three murders mar holiday weekend

A fight between two teenagers from the Boca del Rio area of San Pedro has left one dead and another facing a charge of murder. Police say that around four thirty on Thursday afternoon, seventeen-year-old Lloyd Swazo and eighteen-year-old Jason Joseph got into argument, apparently an old beef that flared up again. The dispute came to an abrupt end when Joseph, a cook by profession, introduced a knife to the fight. He reportedly stabbed Swazo to the right side of his chest, causing the victim to bleed to death. Searches in the Boca del Rio area led to the arrest of Joseph on a single charge of murder. He was formally arraigned in San Pedro Magistrate’s Court today and remanded to Hattieville prison until his next court appearance on April twenty-sixth.

Another teenager also lost his life to the blade over the weekend. San Ignacio police say eighteen-year-old Levi Quewell of Santa Familia Village was in the company of a group of friends attending the Municipal Fair on Saturday night. While the group was socializing down by the banks of the Macal River a fight broke out, during which Quewell was stabbed in the lower left side of his abdomen. Quewell was taken to the San Ignacio hospital but died around twelve-twenty on Sunday morning while undergoing treatment. Police investigations, including statements from Quewell’s friends, led to the arrest of a sixteen-year-old, also a resident of Santa Familia, on a charge of murder. The juvenile appeared in San Ignacio Magistrate’s Court today and has been remanded to Hattieville prison.

The final incident of Easter weekend bloodshed took place on a farm near the Southern Highway on Monday morning. A twenty-seven-year-old Guatemalan housewife told police that around nine thirty in the morning she, her common law husband Lionel Noralez and their three children were at their home, three miles from Maya Mopan Village. The woman says that a man she recognised as forty-eight-year-old Epifanio Guerra, arrived at the farm, armed with a shotgun. She told police that Guerra fired a single shot that caught Noralez in his chest, killing him. Guerra, it is reported, then forced the woman into a nearby wooded area and raped her. Guerra, a resident of San Martin Village, has been detained pending the outcome of murder investigations. Police have also recovered a sixteen-gauge shotgun and an expended shell.

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