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Jan 31, 2006

Two teens arrested for Friday night murder

Story PictureIt was a crime of extreme brutality, but police have acted quickly to arrest and charge two young men for the Friday night murder of businessman Michael Burns. News Five’s Jacqueline Woods was at Magistrate’s Court today as the duo were walked up those familiar steps.

Jacqueline Woods, Reporting
Eighteen year old Keith Lewis and seventeen year old Kareem Gladden claim they were not involved in the murder of fifty-one year old Michael Burns. Authorities, however, say they have strong evidence that link the duo to the gruesome crime. Lewis is believed to have been the person who shot Burns in the head in front of the businessman?s nine year old son and common-law wife, while Gladden is the alleged accomplice seen leaving the crime scene with Lewis.

G. Michael Reid, Police Press Officer
?We believe we have enough evidence to tie these two individuals to the murder of Mister Mike Burns.?

Jacqueline Woods
?Give us some background information on these two young men. Where do they come from? Have they been in trouble before?

G. Michael Reid
?They are both residents of Belize City. I don?t know that I can divulge that, whether they have been in trouble before. That might, you have to understand, influence the case and this is a case before the courts so there is not much I can tell you about these two individuals other than the fact that we do have evidence linking them to this murder.?

Police Press Officer G. Michael Reid would not comment on reports that one of the suspects provided them with information that led to their arrest. Lewis and Gladden certainly did not appear to be concerned about their charges as they were taken over to Magistrate Court.

G. Michael Reid
?This is what is most disturbing about what is happening in our society today. We have individuals who show absolutely no remorse whenever they are involved in incidents like these, and that I think is the scariest part of all.?

Robbery is believed to have been the motive for the murder. Police say Burns was killed with a nine millimetre pistol. That weapon has not yet been recovered.

G. Michael Reid
?We believe that some items were taken, most likely some monies but we don?t know for sure how much and exactly what. But we do believe yes that items were taken from this individual.?

Police say they have more than one witness. In court today, Lewis and Gladden maintained their innocence and further stated that somebody is setting them up by telling lies to the police. Authorities, however, say based on the evidence collected, they do have a strong case against the young men.

G. Michael Reid
?We hope that they will not just walk away from this. Again though that the police does their work and then it is in the hands of the courts, so there is absolutely nothing the police can do once it gets to the court system. We know we have some very well trained attorneys, attorneys that are able to manipulate the facts and twist the facts and lean upon technicalities; there are numerous loop holes that they are able to jump through. So at the end of the day, it is a delicate process.?

?We are now almost ready to bring on stream the whole forensics expertise which we think will help a lot in getting convictions because we won?t have to rely so much on the eyewitnesses, but we can get then the forensic evidence and present it in court.?

Burns will be buried on Friday following services at the Holy Redeemer Cathedral. As for Lewis and Gladden, Magistrate Dorothy Flowers read them a charge of murder and they were remanded to Hattieville prison until February twentieth. Jacqueline Woods for News Five.

As police get ready to close their investigation on the Michael Burns murder case, authorities still do not know why fifty-eight year old Delhart Castro was killed on early Saturday morning. However, police press officer G. Michael Reid told News Five that investigators have been following up on strong leads and believe there will soon be an arrest.

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