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Jan 2, 2018

Frederick Smith is the Last Murder Victim for 2017

Fredrick Smith

While Garcia was the first murder for 2018, police closed off the year with another murder on their hands, bringing the total of murders for 2017 at a staggering one hundred and forty-four.  Around ten-thirty, a long time resident of Antelope Street Extension was murdered execution style and left to die in a drain. Fredrick Smith, an employee of Belize Electricity Limited, was shot to the back as he headed to his house just before the clock ticked away to midnight. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.

 

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

Twenty-two-year-old Frederick Smith was an hour and a half shy of celebrating a new year with friends and family when he was gunned down in cold blood on Antelope Street Extension.  A single round from an unknown killer’s weapon cut him down with a shot the upper back, leaving him for dead in a nearby drain.

 

Alejandro Cowo

ASP Alejandro Cowo, O.C., C.I.B., Belize City

“We had the last murder recorded for 2017 and it occurred on Sunday December, thirty-first, 2017.  Sometime after 10:40 p.m., police were called to Antelope Street Extension where upon arrival they observed a male person lying face down inside of a drain.  The male person was identified as that of Frederick Smith, and as a result of that, police observed that he had an apparent gunshot injury to his upper left back.  He was transported to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival.”

 

It is unclear what led to the fatal shooting.  Smith’s uncle who spoke with News Five off-camera, said that the part-time BEL employee was not known in the community as a troublemaker.  In fact, he says that Frederick was a dedicated family man.

 

Voice of: Uncle of Deceased

“He is a person that does not really get into problems like that, you know.  He rather, you know, stay home with fu he woman weh he have and da soh he live fi he life and thing, you know.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“So the fact that he was killed on New Year’s Eve, I’m certain has shaken up the family.  This wasn’t expected.”

 

Voice of: Uncle of Deceased

“Well eena life yo haftu expect anything too yoh know, yoh cyant just seh dat this noh wahn happen or dat noh wahn happe, yoh undastand.  Da fi always got yoh mind that, yoh know, anything could happen, especially eena dis life weh di happen, yoh undastand.  Eena dis society weh we di live eena right now all kinda craziness di happen so yoh fi always vigilant and expect the unexpected.”

 

Smith may not have seen his attacker approaching, as he was shot once from behind.  In the wake of the shooting police have detained one person for questioning.

 

ASP Alejandro Cowo

“The matter at this moment is presently under investigation.  Police have detained one person that is being interviewed at this moment. All we know is that he was walking, heading towards his residence which is not far from there.  [He] was accompanied by another person when somebody just came out and fired a single shot at him.”

 

According to the uncle, for as long as he has known Frederick as a resident of the Antelope Street Extension area, he was unaware of any issues anyone in that neighborhood.

 

Voice of: Uncle of Deceased

“I cyant really seh pertaining that right, cause like weh a seh I noh really know.  Everybody live dehn own life and thing.  Everybody haftu give account ah dehnself, right.  But I just di seh, ih da my nephew and thing and ih da wahn person weh always happy and joyful, you know, and he noh like pree negative and dehn deh, yoh undastand.  Like weh ah tell yo, he into fu he daughter, ih three-year-old daughter weh di look fi get big directly.  Dat da all fi he focus mi deh pan, fi he ma, ih granny and fi he rest ah family members.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“Within the span of four days there are two murders in that immediate vicinity.  Does that raise concern in terms of the effectiveness of having police on the ground in the Antelope Street area?”

 

ASP Alejandro Cowo

“It does of course raise an alarm to us.  As we have mentioned, any life that is lost is too many for us.  Yes, police are out there doing their specific jobs likewise, patrolling the areas and we know that it is a fact that sometimes the criminals are monitoring the police movements and those are the advantages that they take sometimes when the police are moving from one area to go to another location.”

 

Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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