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Jul 11, 2016

Roger Banner ‘Hit’ for Drug Debt

The second murder in what has now become a series of bloody weekends happened on West Collet Canal near the Public’s Supermarket. The victim, killed in brazen fashion with a hail of bullets to the head, is no stranger to the Police. Roger Banner was a well-known criminal operator in the west before he went to prison a few years back. After his release about six months ago, he moved to Belize City, and that’s where death came calling. Our News Five team has been looking for answers and Mike Rudon has the story.


Mike Rudon, Reporting

On Saturday night, twenty-nine-year-old Roger Banner was hanging out here by the rail along the canal with his girlfriend when three persons allegedly approached them and one man fired multiple shots which struck Banner in the head. He died instantly. Police were called to the scene at around nine-thirty.


Chester Williams

ACP Chester Williams, Regional Commander, Eastern Division South

“Police were called to West Canal, Belize City; that is near Public’s Supermarket. Upon arrival, police observed the lifeless body of one Roger William Banner who was lying on the streets with what appeared to be multiple gunshot wounds to the head and body area. He was transported to the K.H.M.H. and pronounced dead on arrival. Police investigation into that matter so far had lead us to three persons of interests who are currently in our custody and we believe that the motive for that murder was drug related.”


Banner died on the streets – where he had lived all of his adult life except for some time in prison. This picture of him as a young boy is the only one his mother Tomasa has, since he left her home eleven years ago and never looked back. Still, she grieves for the son she remembers.


Roger Banner

Voice of: Tomasa, Mother of Roger Banner

“I am so sorry that I hear the news from Saturday night. It happened that they shoot my son, but I don’t know why. But right now I am sympathize for him because he left my place eleven years ago and since then, he never did come back again. He was staying in Roaring Creek for a while and after that, something mussi happen and he went to prison. And then I hear again that he  come out again and then from that he start to travel about his life and I hear that when he came out again five months ago, he went to Belize. And from that time now, it happened that they kill him Saturday.”


Police believe that Banner’s murder was orchestrated by a Belize City figure to whom he owed money for drugs.


ACP Chester Williams

“From our investigation, there were three persons together, but only one of them was armed with a firearm. Nonetheless, if our investigation or our evidence points us to all persons based on the doctrine of joint enterprise we believe that we’ll be able to charge all three with his murder. We believe that he was indebted to somebody for some drugs and that person was the one who put the hit on him. So that is what our investigation is revealing at this time.”


It’s not a surprising end for the man who lived by his own rules. His family believes that he was impacted by the murder of his father, Peter Banner, in 1997. Banner was gunned down at his home, and was found by nine-year-old Roger.


Voice of: Tina, Sister of Deceased

“From since my stepfather died, his relationship began with friends. He gone into friends and friends tell him lots of things so he joined them. And since, he went on his own and nobody know where he went. We tried to talk to him to come out of that situation that he is in, but he doesn’t want to listen to nobody so he does his own thing. And from since he gone, we didn’t have no kind of close relationship, but anywhere that he see me, he always talk to me and I always try to encourage him to come out of that situation because one of these days, his life will end. But he said he already used to it and anything could happen to him and it don’t really matter.”


Voice of Tomasa

“It hurts me because he is my son, he is my blood. What happened…only God will help him, always.”


Mike Rudon for News Five.

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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