Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith strongly condemned the recent murders of police officers as “cowardly acts” and has promised that the Police Service will relentlessly pursue those responsible.
“It has been observed that over the last weeks there have been deadly and violent firearm attacks against the police…The TTPS remains resolute and united with its law enforcement counterparts to reduce this unacceptable level of violence and ensure that all perpetrators will be prosecuted,” Griffith said in a release issued yesterday.
Griffith made the statement in light of the murder of police sergeant Roger Williams, who was killed along with vendor Natoya Christian, 37, of Laventille during a shooting on Charlotte Street in Port-of-Spain on Saturday evening. Williams’ Sig Sauer pistol loaded with 14 rounds of 9mm ammunition was recovered by a member of the public, secured and handed over to the senior police officer, who arrived at the scene that evening.
Meanwhile, Williams’ colleagues are said to be shocked and very distraught over his death.
They strongly believe that given a chance Williams would have drawn his weapon and “killed the gunman.”
According to his colleagues, Williams was a dedicated officer and “well trained, experienced and alert. Williams, who was a prosecutor at the Port-of-Spain 6th Magistrates’ Court, was fondly called “Willie” by many.
“Unfortunately he had no time to draw his gun otherwise the only death would have been the gunman but from what we were told, is that his back was turned to the direction of the gunman…we have lost a good officer…one who took his job very seriously on and off duty,” Williams’ colleague said, who wished not to be identified.
Another officer described him as a “big brother.”
“He was always humble and gave great guidance.”
According to a police report, at about 7 pm on Saturday, two men were seen walking along Charlotte Street when they opened fire on a group of people.
Christian and Williams and two others—Elvon Gildings, 28, of Laventille and a 46-year-old female vendor from Dillon Street, Diego Martin, were shot. Christian died on the scene while Williams died while undergoing treatment at the Port-of-Spain General Hospital.
Gildings, a vendor, remained warded at the hospital while the fourth victim was treated and discharged.
Griffith along with the executive of the TTPS extended condolences to Williams’ family, colleagues, and friends.