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Jul 4, 2016

A Vigil for Slain Camalote Youths, Community Demands Answers

Akeem Thimbriel & Shawn Lopez

On Friday night, exactly two months after the murder of Camalote youths, Akeem Thimbriel and Shawn Lopez, residents organized a vigil near the Westar Gas Station in the village. The message was two-fold—they want justice for the killing of their loved ones; that someone be brought in to investigate the double murder, and as an act of remembrance for Thimbriel and Lopez.  As we’ve reported before, a man and a woman were detained in connection with the murders, as well as a man, police suspected may be one of the shooters. Authorities were awaiting the expedited results of ballistics testing which would have linked a licensed nine millimeter pistol seized from the suspect to shell casings found on the scene. But today, Irvin Thimbriel stopped by our office appealing to the public and the police department for answers.


Irvin Thimbriel, Father of Deceased

“It’s been a couple of weeks now since we’ve been told by the police that they have some information, but it is about five weeks and we believe that the information that they have, that something should have happened by now. I know that everything takes time and there is a process, but we believe that this process is taking too long. So the community is asking what is going on. We believe that the persons who saw what happened, it is unbelievable that up to this time, the people who actually did this have not been arrested and charged.”


Duane Moody

“You guys got together for a vigil. Talk to us about this.”


Irvin Thimbriel

Irvin Thimbriel

“It was organized by two young persons of the community and so it was done over a three or four-day period and they got a hundred plus persons out there that night. It’s amazing and if they were given more time, they would have been able to bring out much more persons. It is showing that the community wants answers. Camalote has been through a lot of things recently. There have been a lot of crimes in Camalote, done to Camalote people and not by Camalote people and hence we feel as if though we are sheep. This crime we feel as though there is an easy answer to it and it is taking an exceptionally long time for us to have any closure on this. Based on the evidence they have, I believe that if they move a little faster or somebody else is assigned to the case, I can’t see why this is taking so long. Justice delayed is justice denied. We are not asking for vengeance; we are asking for justice. I don’t even want to know the name of the person; I don’t want to see the person, but I just want to know…because it is not only about our situation it is about the situation in the country. There are many persons like us who grieve on a daily basis because we lose our loved ones and nothing is done.”


The cousins were gunned down as they walked towards Lopez’s house. Gunmen fired from a grey pickup which pulled up beside them. Police have confiscated a pickup from Belize City which they believe was the vehicle seen by eyewitnesses at the scene of the murders in Camalote in the west.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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