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Dec 21, 2020

St. Martin’s One Stop Auto Care Targeted in Deadly Shooting

An old beef involving one of several persons who came together as reformed gang members to embark upon a business venture, has left one Belize City resident dead and four others injured.  Last Tuesday, the St. Martin’s Area Community Hub was launched to much fanfare from several agencies and residents.  Less than a week later, that very same location is once again in the news, following an incident on Saturday that left multiple victims injured and a young mechanic dead.  The shooting on Partridge Street Extension may have been unrelated but it continued an otherwise violent weekend in Belize City.  News Five’s Isani Cayetano commences our coverage.


Isani Cayetano, Reporting

On December fifteenth, Albert Clother and a group of friends were present at this location on Partridge Street Extension where, along with officials from the Kolbe Foundation, the United States Embassy and the Love Foundation, they cut the ribbon for a new community-based venture to come forth.  Saint Martin’s One Stop Auto Care was meant to be a safe haven for him and a team of young auto mechanics.  Clother even thanked those organizations for acknowledging the redemptive value in such an undertaking.


Albert Clother

Albert Clother, Manager, Saint Martin’s One Stop Auto Care

“This has been a dream for us for some years, to own our own mechanic shop because, well, working at the other shops, we were the ones that were doing all the work.  So now we own our own shop, we’re gonna work for ourselves now. And we would like to say thanks for this second chance, noh.  Also, we would like to say, don’t look at it like you’re giving us a fish to eat for today.  You’re teaching us how to fish so that we can go ahead and we can eat tomorrow, the day after tomorrow and years to come.”


Tonight, Clother and three others are recovering from injuries they received in a drive-by shooting.  A fifth person was mortally wounded during the armed attack.  It happened on Saturday evening while they were on the compound finishing up a few tasks and getting ready to sign off for the day.  The victim who succumbed from his injuries was thirty-year-old Terrence King.


Terrence King

Voice of: Barbara Humes, Foster Mother of Deceased

“When the embassy dehn open di garage eena di area fu help di community, ih mi excited because ih get fu mi deh ova deh fi do di mechanic and di body works.  Dehn work Saturday and just unfortunate that he was in the wrong place at the time.  Dehn end up di shot ahn.  Five get shot and he end up dead.”


Albert Clother, Terrence King and Jermaine Garnett were among the five persons injured during the deadly spray of bullets.  Garnett, known to many as Horse, was there because he too has been preaching reform since he was released from prison several years ago.  That introductory step made official last Tuesday, also gives him a second chance at redeeming himself in society.


Voice of: Jermaine Garnett, Shooting Victim

“Di lee thing weh happen out ya da just wahn lee incident which paat wahn vehicle pass through and fire and let go wahn amount ah shot atta di group ah man weh mi just di socialize da dehn worksite di look fi lock off di day and finish off di work at quarter to six.  Di vehicle just haul di curve and start to open fire pan di crowd.  One man end up get wahn fatal incident and lose dehn life.  But da noh nothing weh wih seh we wahn fight gainst.  We respect everything.  We really, really bex because da wahn bredrin weh noh really give trouble.  Da just wahn bredrin weh come pan di board wid we because we open up wahn lee spot and ih got lotta brains pan di working weh di happen eena di place.”


It’s a similar sentiment shared by King’s foster parent.  He was never into street life, just a skilled mechanic who jumped at the opportunity to work next door and be a part of that initiative.


Voice of: Barbara Humes

“Ih da mi wahn very good mechanic.  Da wahn person, Terrence noh eena nothing.  Terrence noh eena gang, Terrence noh fight.  If yoh have wahn argument, Terrence walk away.  All ih wahn do da smile and ih wahn walk weh.”


But whoever pounced on the unsuspecting men did so indiscriminately.  Admittedly, Garnett says they were all caught flatfooted.


Voice of: Jermaine Garnett

“Dehn ketch di crowd off-guard, everybody actually mi di sleep up and incapable and everybody cyant run at the same time because then da di way how dehn end up di ketch di crowd.  But then like weh I di tell yoh, due to weh fi we mind just settle off, because we settle off.  We noh into evilness, dat da di reason why dehn ketch we off-guard.  We noh di seh no, dehn noh ketch we off-guard, ih do gaan wrong.”


Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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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