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Dec 29, 2003

Cop wounded in bizarre chopping

It was a long holiday weekend, and that normally means at least a few grizzly murders, but this extended Christmas was blessedly free of fatal violence. It was not for lack of trying, however. In two unrelated incidents that can only be described as bizarre, one policeman was severely wounded by a machete and a special constable was shot with an M-16 fired by none other than a soldier of the Belize Defence Force. In the chopping incident we’ll let the police press release speak for itself: “Police have arrested one Julio Alvarado, nineteen years of Trial Farm Village in the Orange Walk District after a Christmas Day melee left police officer Number 425 Antonio Chan with a chop wound to the head and two severed fingers. Sometime around eleven a.m. on December twenty-fifth, Orange Walk police responded to a report of a chopping in Trial Farm Village. Upon arriving at the scene, police observed a male person suffering from a chop wound to the right hand. Said individual, namely one Misael Alvarado, forty-six years old, reported to police that he had been assaulted by a male person whom he knew. Police then instructed Alvarado to get into the police vehicle and accompany them to locate said assailant. Shortly thereafter, Alvarado’s son Julio Alvarado, nineteen years old, emerged from a house, obviously intoxicated and apparently misunderstanding the situation to be that his father was being arrested, approached the police vehicle with a machete. Julio Alvarado was instructed by police to put down the weapon, but instead the younger Alvarado slapped the machete against the hood of the police vehicle causing a dent. Julio Alvarado was then restrained, but while police officers were engaged in this effort, the elder Alvarado jumped out of the vehicle and picked up the machete and proceeded to chop P.C. Chan several times. Officers then fired a single shot, which hit Misael in the left leg. The younger Alvarado then became more enraged and grabbed the machete, but was also shot in the leg by police. Both persons were subsequently restrained and taken to the Northern Regional Hospital for treatment. P.C. Chan is hospitalised in a stable condition. The younger Alvarado has since been released and was promptly charged with three counts of aggravated assault, one count of wounding, damage to property, resisting arrest, and armed with an offensive weapon. The elder Alvarado remains hospitalised under police guard pending charges of attempted murder and maim.”

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