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Oct 5, 2016

11 year old Boy Killed in Tragic Fire; 2 Other Minors Cling to Life

Aaron Gabourel

The most tragic of deaths—heartless and cold—is that of an innocent child being killed. That’s what happened on Tuesday night on Aloe Vera Street when an arsonist entered into the house of the Hamilton family and knowingly set the house on fire with seven persons, including four children inside. News Five’s Duane Moody reports. 

Caroline Hamilton, Mother of Deceased

“Please baby, please come back. I love yo baby, I love yo. I love mi baby…please I love mi baby. Why unu take ahn away from me? Why? Why? Why? Aaron! Aaron!”


Duane Moody, Reporting

Why? That’s the heart-wrenching and gripping question lingering on the minds of the family of eleven year old Aaron Gabourel. The minor, a student of Stella Maris School, was sleeping inside a bedroom of his home on Aloe Vera Street on Tuesday night when the unthinkable would happen. An murderer, with gasoline in hand, ran into the living room doused the place and lit it on fire. Aaron was trapped inside and despite best efforts to get him out, he perished in the inferno.


Chester Williams

ACP Chester Williams, Regional Commander, Eastern Division South

“We had a fire on Aloe Vera Street last night. We suspect that that fire is arson. In that fire one eleven year old child unfortunately perished. Three other persons were injured; two of whom I am told received ninety percent burn on their bodies and there is an adult who was also burnt but not so seriously. So that matter is being investigated; we are looking for one person of interest in relation to that investigation.”


Caroline Hamilton

Caroline Hamilton

“Wah young man just run from the river side and just start to sprinkle gas and scratch wah match and burn down the whole place; burn up my baby, kill my baby, burn up my niece, burn up my nephew. The baby pa get burn up sake ah di try save the baby.”


Melisa Hamilton, Fire Victim

“I just see somebody just run inside, weh have on wah brown cargo pants and wah brown shirt tied over ih face and only ih eyes and red color hair yo could see. And the person dah wah fair-skinned person just start to dash gas. I tell my kids to run out.”


Empress Hamilton

Thirty-four-year-old Winston Gabourel Senior, Caroline’s common-law husband, ran inside the burning house to save his son. He received burns to his hands and body. Sitting inside the living room watching TV, at the time when the murderer barged in, were thirty-year old Melisa Hamilton, and her three children—eleven year old Jeremiah Hamilton, eight year old Empress Hamilton and four year old Ian Sambula. Tonight, Sambula and Empress are on life-support; in critical condition and fighting for their lives inside the Intensive Care Unit of the K.H.M.H. with third degree burns to ninety percent of the bodies.


Melisa Hamilton

Melisa Hamilton

“The first time dehn burn down mi sister house; thank God nobody was there.  But this time now, it is a real terror because my two baby get burn up; ninety person third degree burn…deh pan life support machine. Mi nephew dead and now dehn di try get help fi get my baby dehn outside dah America. My brother-lee Winston get burn up bad because di young man di dash gas on him—scratch this thing and di dash it pan ahn.”


But what could have motivated such a heinous act that has claimed the life of an innocent child? Our archives show that in May of 2015, in what was determined to also be an act of arson, the Hamilton home was burnt to the ground. Back then and now again; it is suspected that it was as a result of a land dispute in the area.


Caroline Hamilton

“The first time mi house burn down, nothing come outta it. Every time something happen back ah that area, everybody pick pan me and say dah me. And one time I could tell unu that I never fass with nobody; I never had no conflict with nobody. He tell my fourteen year old daughter that ih wah make I cry.  Whatsoever happen to you and yo pickney dehn, dah yo business. Ih di fight mi fi wa land weh dah noh even fi he. That man is a greedy dog and now he has taken my son and I want ih know that I want revenge.”


ACP Chester Williams

“I do not want to go into too much details, but we have our reasons why we are looking for one individual and yes, like you rightly said there is an issue of dispute where that premises is concerned. And so we are following those leads.”


Fire victim Melisa Hamilton says that it was the act of a coldhearted person. As to the health of her two children, she says that they are plans to get them medical assistance outside of Belize.


Ian Sambula

Melisa Hamilton, Fire Victim

“They are working right now hard with the American doctors outside to get them to the special doctors out there that deal with people who get fire burn. We already deal with some papers today; tomorrow we have to finish deal with the birth papers to get them there so that they can shift them out. And the doctors say that my children are very critical. They have a fifty-fifty chance of surviving. What I want to ask this person…why you wah dash gas and you see lee pikney ina wah house weh neva could ever harm you?”


The murderer escaped on a getaway boat on Haulover Creek.  Duane Moody for News Five.


Anyone who would like to assist the family can call 660-7709 or 668-4349.

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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