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Aug 2, 2022

Michael Meighan Turns Himself in; Says He Innocent of Murder

Belize City police are continuing their investigation into the murder of former P.I.V. boss, Darien Banks.  The Oleander Street resident was slain last Monday when someone took aim at him and shot him in cold blood.  But their investigation into the homicide has led them to one individual, an employee of the National Sports Council, whom they believe is a person of interest.  This morning, he handed himself in at the Raccoon Street Police Station, but not before granting us an interview.  News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.


Isani Cayetano, Reporting

When a wanted poster began circulating for information on the whereabouts of thirty-two-year-old Michael Meighan, it came as a complete surprise to him.  At least that’s what he told News Five this morning, before being handed over to police by attorney Norman Rodriguez.  For several days, the employee of the National Sports Council said that he had been trying to reach the officer who requested that he turned himself in for questioning.  Meighan is a person of interest in the murder of Darien Banks, a former gang leader from Lake Independence.


Michael Meighan, Person of Interest

“The shooting dehn weh happen Monday evening.  According to the police dehn, dehn saw National Sports Council truck eena di area when di shooting happen, so dehn gaan da di work compound and leff wahn message with my supervisor fi mek I give een myself or I wanted for questioning.  Dehn wahn sih me fi questioning.  So therefore, the next day me and my lawyer, we di try contact the police.  We mek countless amount ah efforts fi try get in contact with di police dehn cause I noh di hide nor I noh di run from nobody, yoh undastand.  I innocent, I noh do nothing.  I noh have no problem with nobody.”


On the evening of July twenty-fifth, Banks was walking along Ebony Street when he was assaulted by a lone gunman who opened fire on him and left him for dead inside a nearby drain.  The gangland execution is believed to have been reprisal for a shooting on La Croix Boulevard the night before that left three persons injured.  Police investigations ultimately pointed to Meighan.


Michael Meighan

“This state of emergency occurred and the police dehn wahn put up wanted poster with me pan Crime Stoppers and give a wrong address fi me.  That wrong.  I feel like that wrong but that crazy because now unu di seh da like I deh paat ah di BLC or di PIV gang because, according to Mr. Chester, di state of emergency da mi fi di BLC and di PIV gang.  So how comes I come up pan Crime Stoppers wanted with wahn address weh I neva had lived ever before eena my life.  I have no connection eena da area.”


After making contact with his lawyer and having seen the all-points bulletin issued for his arrest over the weekend, Meighan decided to come forward with his story.  Norman Rodriguez says that he, too, made numerous attempts to get a hold of the investigating officer, to no avail.


Norman Rodriguez, Attorney-at-law

Norman Rodriguez

“We know that he is wanted.  He has a duty to hand himself in, so he retained me and that was from Wednesday morning.  I was in Corozal at the time so as soon as I got to Belize City in the afternoon, I made a call to the Queen Street Police Station to find out if it was true.  I was told it is true and that he was wanted by a sergeant at the CIB at this precinct, Precinct Two, I believe.  So I made calls then.  I made multiple calls then and I made multiple calls on Thursday and Friday morning and I left messages.”


In bringing in his client, Rodriguez anticipates that a series of actions will take place, including an interrogation process.


Michael Meighan

“They will detain him at least for a period.  They will attempt to do the interview with him, that’s what they always do.  Even if you say no sometimes, some officers still go ahead and try to do it.  But he has taken my advice and he has instructed me, so I will put that in the form of a letter which I will present to them as to what must and must not be done.”


There are two likely outcomes for Meighan at this juncture.  He can be held in police custody and subsequently be charged for last Monday’s brazen killing and attempted murder.  He can also be questioned and released.  The latter, however, can place a target on his back.


Isani Cayetano

“If you’re released, if you’re not charged and you’re released there’s also the likelihood that you may become a target now that you have been named in either of the two incidents.”


Michael Meighan

“And this da weh I di seh, so before di police dehn mi put out dehn wanted poster ah me and got whole ah Belize feel like I involved eena sohn one ah dehn murda, unu shoulda mi do unu proper investigation and me an my lawyer di try get to unu.  Soh I noh wanted, I noh di run from nobody. Now my whole life change.  I cyant go back.  I cyant go back even fi do wahn regular job.  I da wahn messenger, I get shot di other day.  I get shot di other day di transport things fi National Sports Council.  I noh hurt nobody or do nobody nothing and I get shot di work.  Now imagine with my name out deh.”


Isani Cayetano reporting 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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