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Beloved teacher murdered in Morvant drive-by
A primary school teacher, described as Santa Claus in his Petunia Avenue, Coconut Drive, Morvant community, was one of two men gunned down on Tuesday night.
According to police reports, 47-year-old Hasley “Teach” Mack had gone to buy bread at a neighbourhood parlour when he was shot along with James Julien and Jamali Haywood.
Police said around 7.30 pm a car passed and one man opened fire on those standing near the parlour along Lady Young Avenue, Morvant. The scene of the shooting is less than a stone’s throw away from the Morvant Police Station.
Police said yesterday they suspect the killers merely wanted to create a diversion as they sought their real targets in the community, since none of the men shot were involved in anything illegal.
Julien, 24, also from Morvant, died at hospital along with Mack, while Haywood is now warded in a serious condition at hospital.
Mack, a Standard Three teacher at the Escallier Anglican Primary School, Gonzales, was described by his neighbours as selfless. They gave countless stories of him going beyond neighbourly love to assist them.
“A lot of children will cry, you will see a lot of children crying because that man was a sweetheart,” one neighbour said as others recalled him giving extra lessons for free at his home.
Mack, they said, loved his cup of coffee, a memory which brought laughter to those gathered in his yard.
He was also fond of English Premier League side Chelsea, but teaching was the first love of the father of four, they added.
Relatives of Julien, who spoke at the Forensic Science Centre, St James, said his love for smoking marijuana got him killed, since he had gone to get a smoke when he was shot. Julien has a six-week-old son. A relative, who said she raised him as her own, said he was a troublesome young man who worked several odd jobs and had a pending matter for marijuana possession.
Both men were among four people killed between Tuesday night and yesterday, taking the murder tally to 356 for the year.
The most recent of the killings was that of 49-year-old Anthony Thomas, who was found slumped behind the wheel of his white Nissan AD wagon at Spring Ville, off Trou Macaque Road, Laventille, around 12.45 pm yesterday.
Police said residents heard gunshots during a downpour and later found Thomas dead in his car. Police said the killing was not robbery related as cash and other valuables were left behind and no one from the area claimed to know who he was. Thomas, according to his driver’s permit, lived at Thomas Street, Sunshine Avenue, San Juan.