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May 7, 2013

A house where murder was committed goes up in flames; family believes their lives are at risk

A house went up in flames in the dead of the night on Wednesday in Hattieville. The house was vacant because the owner, Messalena Medina had moved to Belize City. She had been receiving threats ever since the March fourth murder of Abel Arana which occurred at the same house. Medina believes she at risk because another family house was set on fire. News Five’s Duane Moody reports.


Duane Moody, Reporting

Just before midnight on Monday, a fire broke inside this bungalow house on Camal Street in Hattieville. The blaze gutted the entire home; turning thousands of dollars worth of household items and the structure into a pile of rubble. The house is the property of Messalena Medina, who was not at home at the time of the fire. They were informed of the incident by a neighbor moments after the inferno started.


Voice of: Mother of Fire Victim

“Minutes to twelve o’clock, we received a call that this house was on fire. We called the police and for safety measures, my family and I were taken away from Hattieville and taken to Belize City for safety because as you can recall this is not the first house for my family that has been burnt; this is the second daughter’s house that has been burnt down.”


Messalena Medina, Fire Victim

“I neva mi di live at the house at the time. All my daughter clothes and my clothes and stuff mi eena di house. The only suit ah clothes weh I have dah di one weh I have with me dah Belize; everything left ina di house yah so and then dehn just come and burn it like dehn know how it reach here. Dah house mi well furnish. It had refridge, stove, some fot he stuff was for my ma, but majority of them were for me.”


Firefighters were this afternoon investigating the cause of the fire, but the family is certain that the house was deliberately torched because it had no electricity.


Messelena Medina

Messelena Medina

“No electricity neva ina the house because they cut out the light like two weeks ago due to the fact that we neva mi deh di stay yah, we neva had money to pay the light. We mi wah put it in back when I come back home come stay. But at the time, no light neva deh ina the house.”


And if the area looks familiar, that is because the house on May fourth was processed as the crime scene for the murder of twenty-two year old Abel Arana and the shooting of Sherlock Martinez. Since then, Medina and her mother say they have been receiving threats.


Messelena Medina

“Dah yah I mi wah come back home come live. I just gone due to the fact that the threats and so weh my family and me mi di get. That dah the reason why I gone dah Belize.”


Voice of: Mother of Fire Victim

“This no make no sense to me. We noh the look fi problems; problems come and find us if that is so true. But it’s been so long. Why dehn wah bring this up now? Weh you could gain from burning a house down? This makes no sense. We di try come to grips with what happen and my family is just being terrorized every time. They are being threatened. When will all this madness stop? That is what I want to know. Who the hell is doing all of this to my family? What have we done to them that they could put we through this all the time.”


In fact, just one day after Arana’s murder, on March fifth, Medina’s sister, Tiffara Usher’s wooden house went up in flames in a confirmed arson incident believed to have been in retaliation of the homicide.


Messalena Medina

“I believe that it is the same guy because we know for a fact who burn down my sister house. I believe that dah he come and burn down my house too because after ih burn down my house ih gone all around Hattieville how he do it, why ih do it and who tell ahn fi do it.”


Voice of: Mother of Fire Victim

“Dah only my house left next? I have a house to the back. Dah only my house left next? If dah that wah happen, make dehn goh ahead and burn it because I am so tired. I am only human and I only can take so much and I am really, really tired.”


The family believes that the culprit lives within the village and in close proximity to the area. 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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2 Responses for “A house where murder was committed goes up in flames; family believes their lives are at risk”

  1. Storm says:

    I remember reading about that gunfight where Abel Arana was killed, he supposedly wounded his killer. Let’s have some report follow up on that story — what happened to the shooter, did he recover from his wound? Has anyone been charged for killing Arana? Arana may have deserved to die, it was not his first shooting, but investigations still need to be carried out and legal processes followed to the end.

    Anyway, this story seems to be an example about how criminals can bring harm to their own families, when they shoot someone and run away. It’s natural for the victim’s family to want revenge, and some people will act on that impulse.

    Arana’s shooter should be a man and come forward and protect his family by giving himself up. If he doesn’t, I guess we’ll all know he’s cowardly.

  2. Storm says:

    I forgot to identify the cowardly shooter in my earlier post, but he was identified at the time as the infamous Sherlock Martinez.

    But if the Arana clan is setting these fires, they are cowardly, too, going after defenseless women and children, trying to burn them out, instead of hunting down Sherlock.

    Both sides need to quit hiding behind skirts!

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