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Mar 17, 2020

Teenager Gunned Down on Gladden Street

Collet Morter

Before Kia Herbert, was gunned down in her house, a father of one was shot and killed in Belize City.  Collet Morter was hanging out with friends when the killer reportedly approached the house and called him out.  Morter went to the door to check who it was, but before he stepped outside, he was gunned down.  Reporter Andrea Polanco spoke with Morter’s mom today and she says his murder is the result of the environment in which he lived. Here’s the story.

 

Doreen Baltazar, Mother of the Deceased

“All that I have heard is that he was at his friend’s house and someone came upstairs and he went to look outside and deh shoot ah.”

 

Andrea Polanco, Reporting

Murder came calling at this house on Gladden Street in Belize City on Monday night around nine o’clock. Nineteen-year-old Collet Morter answered the call. The response was a single gun-shot – that bullet penetrated this screen door – and hit Morter in the chest. By nine-thirty that night he was pronounced dead at the K.H.M.H.

 

Doreen Baltazar

“I heard they called his name but then another friend said that they heard walking up the step and Collet gone dah the door and said who dat? And the person obviously mi the stoop down because they have a screen door and when Collet said who dat, he just get up and shoot ah.”

 

Doreen Baltazar

Andrea Polanco

“Do you believe your son was the intended target in that case?”

 

Doreen Baltazar

“I don’t know because the way Belize the go anybody could be the intended target.”

 

Morter was inside the house with a group of friends watching TV when the killer arrived. According to Morter’s mom, Doreen Baltazar, this is a spot where he’d usually stay.  The last time she saw her son alive was on Sunday.

 

Doreen Baltazar

“He is always there. He sleep deh because when he deh back yah, I tell ah if you can’t be in by nine don’t come here. So, he has his friend house where he would usually sleep, rest, heng, yuh know. He was a great person just that he annoyed the hell outta me. (Laugh)”

 

Andrea Polanco

“When was the last time you saw him; spoke to him?”

 

Doreen Baltazar

“I saw him on Sunday when he come fi food and I asked him if dah only food he come fah and I texted him Sunday night too.”

 

Baltazar says that she doesn’t know much about her son’s daily routines or if he was involved in criminal activities that may have put his life in danger. She believes, however, that her son was killed because of the environment in which he lived.

 

Doreen Baltazar

“The reason, I think why deh kill my son is just the environment. This group wants leadership or whatsoever and this group wants the same. It is just the environment we deh ina.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“Do you think that he associated with questionable characters, people who may be involved in illicit activities?”

 

Doreen Baltazar

“My son dah friends with a lot people – the good, the bad, the ugly. If that was his downfall, I am sad to say it hurts me.   My son, he smoke his lee weed and when deh take their picture they throw up their lee signs and that right deh could ah mi mek he wah target but to say if he was in gangs, I have always talked to Collet and my ma always talked to Collet that it doesn’t make sense to be in any gangs. So, I neva think that Collet was in no gang, though.”

 

Less than twelve hours after she lost her son, Balthazar says it is taking a lot to keep calm during this tragedy but she must remain strong for her other five children. She says that she fears for her family’s safety during these violent times, where the gun violence is spilling over and people are being killed in their homes. She says that she’s had to come to terms that her son’s killer may never be brought to justice because fear and silence in these communities have empowered these criminals.

 

Doreen Baltazar

“Nothing can be done. The police deh have deh hands full and things the happen and people nuh the talk. We nuh the talk. You understand me? So, it will forever be happening until we decide to put our face forward and say what, I know dis yah one and dat one deh doing something – deal with that. So, everybody scared right now and nobody wants to talk because then yuh life deh pahn the line.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“So, you think that culture of silence or the “informer fi dead” mentality within these communities is enabling these criminals to do what they do?”

 

Doreen Baltazar

“Yap. It di give deh lotta courage because they saying I wah do this and you nuh wah talk or dah you next. So, we are afraid. If I mi know personally who take my son’s life, I neva mi wah say anything either because I just mi wah leave it as it is because the world is a circle.”

 

Reporting for News Five, I’m Andrea Polanco.


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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