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Mar 27, 2008

Two dead, three injured in separate city shootings

Story PictureThree separate shootings in twenty-four hours have left two people dead, three others injured and the police with more questions than answers. Our coverage of the carnage begins in an alley off Lakeview Street.

Marion Ali, Reporting
When twenty-five year old Leon Beeks left his girlfriend’s home this morning to go to work, she never imagined that it was the last time she would see him alive.

Voice of Lucretia Myvette, Girlfriend of Murder Victim
“He get up and gone ih home and when ih come back ih bring foil in bag with bread een deh and I get up we mi cook beans and rice last night and I get up fi warm some beans eena the microwave for ah and so me and he sit dong di eat. He kiss me pan my mouth and ih gone and ih tell me ih wah come home this afternoon … this afternoon noh come. That dah di last time I see ah.”

Eyewitnesses tell News Five that at around nine-twenty a.m. two gunmen wearing masks rode onto Krooman Road to the Slate Woodwork Cabinet Shop. They dropped their bikes in front of the business, walked to the back where Beeks and his friends were sanding lumber and opened fire on them. Beeks was hit in the back of the head and died on the spot. His friend, Marvin Reyes, was shot three times: once in the abdomen, once in the shoulder and in the right leg. The assailants then walked back to their bikes and headed toward the Western Highway.

Voice of Eyewitness
“Two mask man run up pan the job site. Four ah we middi work and they just open fire. When I look back I just see Beeks drop and they shot wah next young boy.”

Marion Ali
“Four ah unnu da mi friend chu? All ah unnu get this job Tuesday?”

Voice of Eyewitness
“We get the job good while. We mi gone pick up wah machine outta sea and the man offer we wah job. I noh really sure dah when but the man just offer we wah lee job yo get the sense and we agree to work with the man and dah just we mi di do that everyday. Only I think, yesterday we ride dah work and today…”

Marion Ali
“You know who would ah have it in fi unnu?”

Voice of Eyewitness
“Noh really. I noh even si nobody, da two mask man. I just run fi my life. They just run thru the front door straight through the front door. We di work dah back.”

Beeks and his three of his friends had just started working at the cabinet shop on Tuesday. Their job was to sand lumber and they had not even collected their first pay cheque yet when the shooting occurred.

Voice of Loydia Beeks, Sister of Murder Victim
“We had plans fi mi have was family dinner tonight but they come and they just tek my bredda life from we just like that. We seh my ma celebrate ih birthday, we not even have nothing fi my ma. So we just mi wah get together and celebrate my ma birthday but weh kinda celebration this could be now? They just come and just tek my bredda out ah my ma life, out ah fi we life. That dah only my one bredda from off ah my ma side weh we have and they just wah mek ih come come drop like bird. We dah no bird. Everybody got somebody weh love them round yah so they just wah come come tek my bredda just like that. They noh know the pain weh deh put fi we family through.”

Neighbours on Krooman Street heard the shots ring out but never realised what was taking place. Chunox villager, Milton Nag, had come to Belize only yesterday and was right across the street from where the murder occurred. The incident has left him stunned about city life.

Milton Nag, Area Resident
“We were inside the house when we heard those peoples were shot. I get outside from here in the window when I saw one of those men who run right deh. He left his cap right there in the road. Everybody was frightened, they run everywhere. I was scared when a heard a shot from a gun. It was my first time that I heard that from so close.”

About an hour after the shooting a team of senior police officers arrived on the scene. While Assistant Superintendent of Police Bart Jones did not have much information to offer, he maintained the department is looking at the crime wave seriously.

Marion Ali
“Any suspects?”

A.S.P. Bart Jones, Acting Press Officer
“Not at this time but we are pursuing some leads at this time. Even from before earlier shootings, I think right after the elections, the shootings right after—we have always been on alert and even from prior to the elections and so we continue to operate. I don’t know of any extended or any higher alert that we may have been placed on.”

But Beek’s killing was not one of mistaken identity since he told his girlfriend only this morning that he’d felt his life was in danger.

Lucretia Myvette
“Ih just seh he feel like somebody di watch he and so when he go dah work pan fi he job site ih seh.”

Marion Ali
“Ih call anybody name to you?”

Lucretia Myvette
“Ih call somebody name but I noh really want seh dah who.”

Marion Ali
“When ih call this person name, weh ih seh? Ih seh ih feel like dah this person di watch ah or have it out …”

Lucretia Myvette
“Ih seh the person deh pass he and deh know weh he work. Ih seh deh bally know weh pah he work and ih tell me di person name but ih seh they pass ah pan the way when ih gwein da work. Di person pass deh pan di way when they gwein dah work and blow after deh. That dah weh he tell me.”

Marion Ali
“So which street this happen pan?”

Lucretia Myvette
“Ih neva tell me which street nor nothing. I neva know all ah that till this morning before he gone da work dat da weh he sit dong and tell mi.”

Up to news time no suspects had been arrested for the Beeks murder. Reporting for News Five, I am Marion Ali.

Reyes underwent surgery this afternoon for the bullet wound to his abdomen and is now admitted in stable condition at the surgical ward of the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital.

No motive, no clues and no arrests, that’s the same story in Wednesday’s night killing.

Marion Ali, Reporting
Around seven thirty on Wednesday night, prison officer Edgar Segura was gunned down as he stood at the corner of Daisy Lane and Oleander Street. Segura is a resident of Biscayne Village but has an address on Flamboyant Street. Reports are that he had just arrived at the Banks residence and was talking to friends when he was struck three times in the groin by a barrage of bullets.

Residents of Oleander Street whose homes came under fire and whose lives were also threatened spoke to News Five off camera.

Voice Area Resident
“I deh out yah di sell bread and powderbun, I always do that yo know. I ask mi grandson get some food fi warm eena the microwave. Ih warm it and ih bring it outside fi me and I start to eat. And as I start to eat I hear this thing gone off. About seven or eight ah them and all I could mi do dah just seh Lord help me and I neva move because we I wah move fah? I sit right there until the bullets deh done fire and then I …”

Marion Ali
“They come from weh pah?”

Area Resident
“They come from by Daisy Lane are and they supposed to gone over dah other street.”

Marion Ali
“Dah mi how much ah them?”

Area Resident
“I neva si dah how much ah them. I only hear di bullets them.”

Marion Ali
“And then the young man who got shot mi come hail unnu?”

Area Resident
“Yeah, ih mi come hail me because da wah boy weh always visit. Da wah very nice guy, ih noh give no problem. No kind, because he noh smoke, he noh drink nor nothing. I noh see how da bullet ketch ah. Sometimes I seh I wish da mi me. Because I done have one kidney, why ih couldn’t be me, more than somebody young like him and very nice.”

Marion Ali
“How close ih mi di sand up to you when this happen?”

Area Resident
“Well, he neva stand up yah, he mi stand up right by the lane with deh one di talk and ih mi just come dong.”

Area Resident, Finger Grazed by Bullet
“I mi deh by di gate di hold my baby and then I just feel the thing burn me pan my hand then from deh I si two boy pan bicycle from round the lane yah so, Daisy lane. They come to the corner ah lane and tek out the gun and fire it, wah dark skin person and wah clear skin person and dat is it. Then I si they gone down the other lane, dah lane right deh. Have wah checkered shirt, that’s it.”

Marion Ali
“Ih fire the bullets them and you mi di stand up yah with your baby?”

Area Resident
“Right yah so yeah, with the baby.”

Marion Ali
“Di baby get hurt?”

Area Resident
“Hmm-mm, nothing no happen to di baby.”

Police say the motive of last night’s killing remains a mystery.

A.S.P. Bart Jones, Police Press Officer
“It’s a fair skinned person in a camouflage pants, that is our understanding, ride their and began to fire shots in the direction of the person who has died. I think it’s Edgar Segura, a prison officer who was in front of the residence, who was fatally injured.”

Marion Ali
“Was he the target?”

A.S.P. Bart Jones
“I cannot say at this time. I haven’t spoken to the investigators personally so I don’t know where the investigation is leading in terms of if he was the intended target or he was just a bystander.”

Anyone with information on the killing is asked to please call the nearest police station or Crimestoppers. Reporting for News Five, I am Marion Ali.

The recent spate of gun violence seems to only revolve around young men but on Wednesday evening there was a shooting of a different sort when a dispute between Taiwanese businessmen ended in bloodshed. The incident happened at Belize Aluminum and Glass Limited at mile three and a quarter on the Northern Highway. Today, the alleged gunman, forty-one year old Yung Sheng Zhong of Queen Charlotte Street, appeared in court to answer to two counts each of Attempted Murder, Dangerous Harm, and Use of Deadly Means of Harm. The matter has been adjourned until April twenty-ninth. According to police, investigations show that the shooting occurred shortly after five when Zhong became embroiled in a heated dispute with fifty year old Chi Cheong and his wife, forty-one year old Ivy Chan. It is believed that during the exchange, Zhong produced a nine millimetre handgun from his jacket and fired three times at the couple. One of the bullets struck Cheong in the left side of his abdomen while Chan was hit twice, once in the right side of her abdomen and a second time to her lower back. The accused gunman was detained by police shortly after the injured rushed couple was rushed for medical treatment.

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