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Cop shot with own gun after botched robbery
Police Constable Ronnie Samaroo who foiled a robbery attempt, when he went to execute an arrest warrant in Marebella yesterday morning was shot at close range in his stomach with his own service revolver by the bandit he was attempting to arrest. Police officers, who came to Samaroo’s rescue, fired at the shooter, Jodie Parris, 37, killing him on the spot.
Samaroo and Parris were both rushed to the San Fernando General Hospital. Parris was pronounced dead on arrival while Samaroo, 27, of Harbhajan Hill, Debe, was rushed to the emergency room, where he underwent surgery. He was later admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) in a serious condition.
Scores of vendors, pedestrians and people on their way to work, witnessed the incident around 7.45 am in the busy compound of the JTA Supermarket. Official police reports stated Parris and another man were about to rob a Kiss truck which was delivering goods to the supermarket, when Samaroo, a warrant officer spotted him, while driving along the Southern Main Road.
Unaware, that a robbery was about to take place, Samaroo and PC Cupid, both attached to the Marabella Task Force, stopped to execute the warrant and arrest Parris. They said Parris spent most of his life in and out of prison With handcuffs in hand, Samaroo attempted to arrest Parris, who resisted and attacked the officer.
A struggle ensued and in the melee, Parris reportedly grabbed Samaroo’s firearm from his holster and shot him in the stomach. The other man fled the scene. The other officer called for backup from the nearby police station. Assistant Commissioner of Police (South) Fitzroy Fredericks, Superintendent Hackshaw and Inspector Anthony Charles, together with other officers visited the scene.
Parris’ hat and one side of his shoes were left lying on the ground as crime scene Investigators collected evidence. A woman witnesses, who requested anonymity, said she mistakenly thought the volley of gunshots was firecrackers until she saw people running from the scene.
She added; “When I watch, the man shoot the police. I hear the police bawl out, screaming in pain. The next police officer jump in to defend his colleague and shoot the Rastaman.” The second man, who was with Parris, ran away, she said.
Vendors who operate nearby, said Parris was a bad man who terrorised hard-working, innocent people and they were glad he was dead.
“He used to distress people,” one said. Meanwhile, Samaroo’s relatives flocked to the hospital yesterday, praying for his safe recovery. His younger brother, Neil, 23, recalled his family’s trauma when he got a call saying he had been shot.
“My mother called Ronnie’s cellphone and someone else answered. They tell she Ronnie just got shot,” he added.
Neil said the doctors told them the surgery was successful but they were frightened because he was in the ICU. He said his brother, who has three years in the service, was very committed to his job. He said he was transferred to Marabella Police Station about two months ago.
“He never get into in any shooting or anything like this. He was in raids before but nothing this serious ever happened,” Neil added. Investigations are continuing.
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