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Jun 4, 2013

Ex-cop drowns in river

Maurice Duce

The body of an ex-cop was pulled out of the Belize River before noon today. It was spotted floating hours earlier and was finally retrieved in the area of the Haulover Bridge by a group of police officers with assistance from the B.D.F. who had been scouring the area. To the surprise of the police, the body clothed in black pants and white T-shirt was identified as a former officer, Maurice Duce. While the cause of death is drowning, Duce’s family wants a full investigation. Duane Moody was at the scene when the body was retrieved. We warn that the scene is graphic.


Duane Moody, Reporting

Just after eight this morning, there were reports of a body floating in the Belize River. A search team from the Ladyville Police responded to the area in the vicinity of Manatee Lookout near mile eight on the Phillip Goldson Highway. The officers searched the waters in this canoe but to no avail. By ten o’clock, officers were once again on the bank of the river…this time by the Haulover Bridge after the body was spotted by a tour on the river. And by eleven o’clock, the body was found and pulled to the Haulover.


ASP Calbert Flowers, Acting Rural Executive Officer, Police Department

Calbert Flowers

“Sometime around ten o’clock this morning, we received a call from our control room of a body, an apparent lifeless body floating in the river. We got the assistance of the Belize Defense Force in their vessel and sometime around eleven o’clock the apparent lifeless body of a dark skin male persons was found floating face down in the Belize River between miles six and seven off the Northern Highway.”


Little did the officers know that the body was that of a former co-worker, twenty-four year old Maurice Joseph Duce. Maurice had resigned from the force approximately a year ago and according to his dad, Joseph Duce, he was last seen on Sunday by his relatives.


Joseph Duce

Joseph Duce, Father of Deceased

“One of my daughter’s called me first saying they find somebody and ih think dehn say dah my son. And so I tell ahn I noh think so because I noh think he ina dehn condition fu that happen. Then I come from a tour and I hear that about twelve-thirty when I reach dah Tourist Village, Mister Grinage come look for me; bad news because dehn find my son dead. He used to be a police man, ih work with dehn and ih dah ih boss. So I come up here where dehn wah got the post mortem and when I come see, dah my son.  I saw Maurice Friday. Ih mi deh with ih bredda and nephew, niece on Sunday.”


Maurice’s body was taken to a site on the Boom/Hattieville Road where an autopsy was conducted forthwith due to the state of decomposition of the body. And by three p.m., Acting Rural Executive Officer, Assistant Superintendent Calbert Flowers confirmed that the cause of death was determined as drowning.


ASP Calbert Flowers

“The body was in an advance state of decomposition; a postmortem had to be carried out right away and the findings revealed that the body died from drowning.  The body was badly decomposed and a part of the left arm was missing.”


The family was taken to the scene to view the body of their loved one late this evening. Contrary to the police, they suspect foul play and want a full investigation.


Joseph Duce

“Dehn say dah just drowning because no violence and soh; that dah weh dehn tell me.”


Duane Moody

“But you do not believe that?”


Joseph Duce

“Well I noh think anybody could believe that, [but] that dah weh dehn say.”


Duane Moody

“What do you believe happened?”


Joseph Duce

“Well ina this situation, I noh see how he gwen way by river fi anything. Something happen and dehn dash ahn out deh. That dah weh I could say.”


Duane Moody

“Do you know whether he had any enemies or anybody that would want to take his life?”


Joseph Duce

“Well I can’t believe it because dah wah cool bwai; dah noh wah person weh talk. He noh talk he just always everything alright.  Well God knows. I am a Haitian, I come from Haiti, one of these days I must get my justice. God will help me to get it definite.”


Maurice’s body was buried this evening at Eternal Gardens at mile thirteen on the George Price Highway. Duane Moody for News Five.


Meanwhile in Corozal, police are asking the public for assistance in identifying a man, believed to be between the ages of fifty and sixty years, whose body was found on second Street South, Corozal Town on Sunday. The body is at the Orange Walk morgue where a postmortem is to be held. According to police, all that is known is that the man goes by the name of Swasey or Alexander and is not from Corozal Town.

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1 Response for “Ex-cop drowns in river”

  1. Storm says:

    RIP, and condolences to his loved ones. Sad as it is, I hope it is nothing more than a tragic accident.

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