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Sep 7, 2021

Civil Disobedience in Santa Familia after Soldier’s Death

Today, a News Five crew was back in Santa Familia Village where residents came out in huge numbers to express their outrage over the shooting death of B.D.F. soldier Jessie Escobar. The public protest started as early as six-thirty on Monday night when the main entrance to the village near the bus stop was almost impassable after tires were set on fire as residents chanted for justice. Today, that chorus resounded even as the Commissioner of Police and a team of officers visited the village to quell the upheaval.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

It was a fiery night in Santa Familia Village on Monday. Residents were up in arms, furious about the shooting death of one of their own at the hands of lawmen.

 

Jessie Escobar

That same conviction continued into today when residents gathered in front of Branch Mouth Stop and Shop Store, the location where off-duty B.D.F. soldier Jessie Escobar was shot and killed by another soldier Private R. Valencia, who was part of a joint foot patrol in the village.

Residents and family members are calling for justice; that a murder charge be levelled against the officer who fatally wounded Escobar.

 

Noreen Escobar

Noreen Escobar, Mother of Deceased

“He promised me front of everybody that he will make justice and I am satisfied with that because that is no manslaughter. That is murder. He promised me and I feel good that he will do something because he is the boss of it. The worst thing is that they killed my son in front of my lee baby. That hurt me a lot. Now, my lee baby when she see a police or B.D.F. she start to cry and she say, I am a afraid of that. You ask her where is her daddy; she say the B.D.F. kill my pa.”

 

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police

“I decided to come this morning because I think that as the commissioner of police, I owe the mother, Miss Escobar, some explanation as to what we are doing to give her that assurance that she may be seeking. I am hoping likewise to meet with the common-law or the wife to also give her that assurance.”

 

It’s an emotional time for the residents, because there were two other men along with Escobar, his common-law wife and their two-year-old daughter. Among them was Cordelia Landero’s son, who says he too would have been shot if he did not get on the ground.

 

Cordelia Landero

Cordelia Landero, Resident, Santa Familia Village

“They pointed the gun to my son also, but luckily they missed it. They miss it because my son kneel down and that’s why they missed the gun on him. But from Wednesday, they fired at my son; I heard it. I was on my bed when I heard two shots on Wednesday that same week and I just feel something on my heart. And the next day I found out that they fired the gun to my son and he’s only twenty-one years. They threatened my son to death and told my son, if he said something, they are going to kill him. And that’s why I am talking as a mother because I am frustrated, I am tired; enough is enough.”

 

Commissioner of Police Chester Williams says that the video and comments made by the police and B.D.F. will reviewed by the D.P.P. to determine what charge will be levelled against the lawmen.

 

Chester Williams

Chester Williams

“From what we saw on the video, it is an unjustified shooting. There is nothing that we can do or say to try and justify that and any right-thinking person will come to that conclusion. We will do our part and I understand what the people of the village are calling for – they want justice – and as the principal law enforcement agency, it is our duty to properly investigate to make sure that the people get what they are seeking.”

 

Reporter

“Requisite intent to kill – is that something that can be established?  I know you are not pre-empting the D.P.P., but just looking at the base facts with your knowledge of the law.”

 

Chester Williams

“I would look at the comments uttered before the shooting, the actions during the shooting and the comments after the shooting and I’ll leave it at that.”

 

The case file has already been forwarded to the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions for a determination to be made on what charge or charges will be levelled. Duane Moody 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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