“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Guaya gang leader gunned down
A 33-year-old Guayaguayare gang leader was gunned down and his 17-year-old girlfriend wounded in what police have dubbed a revenge killing. Daud Rashad Abdullah, of Nurse Trace, New Lands Village, was shot six times by gangsters who accused him of kidnapping and murdering a fellow gang member who has been missing since August. After the shooting, one of the gunmen shouted, “That is for my partner Nyrie.” Police said the murder comes on the heels of an escalating drug and gang war which has been plaguing the community recently. A father of five, Abdullah had charges for possession of arms and ammunition before the Mayaro Magistrates Court.
His teenage girlfriend, Vanessa Hepburn-Eccles, was up to late last night warded in a serious condition at the Sangre Grande Hospital, with a gunshot wound to the stomach. The shooting took place around 2 am, at Hepburn-Eccles’ home at La Savanne Circular Trace, which she shares with her mother, stepfather and two younger siblings. Alexandrov said after Abdullah was shot three times with a 9mm semi-automatic pistol, he began to run but another assailant with a shotgun followed him and fired two more shots which struck him in the back. As he slowed down from the loss of blood, the gunman approached him and shot him again. “He sustained the first two gunshot wounds to his back, but this was at a distant range, because only the pellets reached his skin. Then probably he was weakening, as he was losing blood, and he was approached by his assailant with a shotgun, who shot him to the back of his head while still in a standing position. This wound was at close range, because I recovered the plastic wadding and probably about 25 back shot pellets,” Alexandrov said.
Police including Insp Fitzgerald George and Cpl Bachu along with ambulances went to the scene, but so severe were the injuries to Abdullah’s heart, lungs, stomach, aorta, liver and spleen that he died immediately. Hepburn-Eccles was taken to the Mayaro District Health Facility and then transferred to the Sangre Grande Hospital.
In an unrelated matter, police have arrested a suspect in the stabbing death of 34-year-old Reginald Jackman, who was killed after a dispute over money. Jackman, from Evelyn Trace, El Socorro, was liming at a bar on the Aranguez Branch Road around 2.40 pm yesterday, when he and another man got into an argument over money. The man pulled out a knife and stabbed Jackman several times. Jackman was taken to the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, but was pronounced dead on arrival. The suspect was arrested at his home on Aranguez Branch Road and the murder weapon was seized. The murder toll is now 55, 13 more than for the corresponding period last year.