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May 23, 2022

Concepcion Man Chopped to Death; His Female Cousin Remains Critical

Wendy Mendez

We now go to Concepcion Village where there was a deadly chopping incident.  Family and friends believe that Arturo Mendez was cheated out of his life when he was hacked to death by a man whom he opened his home to two days earlier.  Mendez, who lives with an impediment, was at his home when he got into an altercation with his attacker. He was chopped multiple times to the body and died within minutes, before the machete-wielding assailant turned his attention to Mendez’s cousin, Wendy Mendez. Wendy is also hacked multiple times to the head and is now clinging to life at the Northern Regional Hospital in Orange Walk. News Five’s Duane Moody reports.


Duane Moody, Reporting

Thirty-four-year-old Wendy Mendez is fighting for her life at the Northern Regional Hospital after she was chopped multiple times to the head on Sunday afternoon. She was inside this house with her cousin, forty-seven-year-old Juan Arturo Mendez, when a dark complexion man known to them as “Panther,” hacked Arturo to death before attacking Wendy. The screams and commotion could have been heard by neighbours. Felipe Uk lives next door and recounts what he heard and saw.


Juan Arturo Mendez

Felipe Uk, Witness

“I heard a lot of machete slamming in the house. But you see the backdoor, it is always closed. So I only hear, I can’t see what’s going on. I heard screams, I heard the lady cursing, I heard the colored guy cursing them too and big bad words. I heard a lot of commotion for about half an hour and then it just ease down. I saw the colored guy come out and gone on his bicycle and then he come back again. Then I see him come out again, went to the pipe right out there, washed his face and his hands, jumped on his bike and gone again.”


Minutes after the assailant left the scene, Mendez’s sister arrived at the house to find her brother dead and her cousin drenched in blood. Uk accompanied her into the house.


Felipe Uk

Felipe Uk

“He was on the ground, flat on the ground, his face on the ground and he had a large cut wound on his back, on his shoulders and his throat was chopped up too. Right on the backdoor against the wall that’s where he was lying on the floor. The girl, she was on the bed. When I went in and she heard her cousin screaming, she just sat on the bed and then just looked at us and then dropped back again. Her whole face was unrecognizable because it was bloodied and it was already getting dry.”


ASP Fitzroy Yearwood

ASP Fitzroy Yearwood, Communication Director, Belize Police Department

“There was a female with chopped wounds to her face, unconscious. She was transported to the Corozal Community Hospital. An argument occurred earlier that day between a friend of Juan Arturo that he gave lodging at their residence. It is reported that he asked that person to leave because he had overstayed his welcome and that person refused. An argument ensued between them and that male person took a machete and caused his fatal injuries and left Wendy in a critical state.”


Family and friends believe that Arturo was “chanced” out of his life. He lived by himself inside the house. He did not work because when he was twenty, he was in an accident and lost use of the right side of his body; he walked with a limp and had no strength in the right hand.  According to Felipe Uk, Mendez’s attacker was staying there about two days before the killing.


Felipe Uk

“The colored guy, he was only hanging out with them two days. I saw him early Saturday morning and then on Sunday morning, I saw him out there about eight o’clock hanging out his clothes to dry.”


While police processed the scene, the alleged attacker returned, claiming that he didn’t do it. But he was nevertheless taken into police custody.


Felipe Uk

“When the people were all crowded here, the guy came back on his bicycle with the machete on the handle. Yeah. He came back to check and police hold him right here.”


Duane Moody

“He’s from the village?”


Felipe Uk

“No he is not from here. I don’t know where he is from, I just saw him two days.”


ASP Fitzroy Yearwood

“This person has been detained by police and I am certain that charges will be leveled against him soon.”


Wendy Mendez has since been transferred to the Northern Regional Hospital where she remains in a critical condition. 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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