Security guard Matthew James, 27, a father of two, was last seen at his place of work collecting food orders from his colleagues as he was about to go on a food run overnight on Saturday. He was never seen since.
However, his partially burnt body was found in a booth that is currently under construction at the Queen’s Park Savannah, in Port-of-Spain, near Chancery Lane on Sunday morning.
James’ body was discovered by a security guard employed by the National Carnival Commission at about 8.15 am. James lived at Santa Cruz.
His car, a beige Toyota Yaris PBZ 6832, was believed to have been stolen and was involved in a hit-and-run accident on Sunday night.
An autopsy report revealed that James died from multiple stab wounds to the neck.
Speaking with the T&T Guardian yesterday at the Forensic Science Centre, James’ uncle, Nigel Rivas said his wife is six months pregnant and because he was not working and his second child on the way, he decided to apply to the security company.
Rivas said his nephew was only employed with Shield Security Services Limited three weeks ago and was last seen at about 3 am on Sunday.
Rivas said upon enquiries from James’ colleagues, he was only told that James was on the 6 pm to 6 am shift and was about to leave the Albion Plaza Energy Centre, Victoria Avenue to go and purchase food, “I was told that he had already collected monies from his co-workers and told what to get them. However, when we asked if someone went with him we were told that they couldn’t say anything more on it.”
“We find it strange but what we also find strange is that why wasn’t the family contacted when Matthew never returned to his job after everyone knew that he was going to buy food and come back? Was there anyone to check in on the guards who are on duty to make sure they are ok? They never called any family member to find out why he abandoned his post. Nothing, he went missing for however long and nobody contacted the family.” Rivas added.
Rivas is also calling on the police for swift justice and to view CCTV footage that he and the rest of the family strongly believes will assist in their investigations, “It has CCTV cameras all over the place…look at it, I am sure they will see what happened to Matthew that morning and who went with him and where he was killed and who took his car. They must find something.”
Simon Sobrian, managing director of Shield Security, in extending condolences to James’ family, confirmed that James began working at the company three weeks ago and described him as a “Respectful young man with no blemishes on his record since his employment.”
Sobrian, however, could not comment further as he said it was an “active investigation.”
James is the second security guard at the company, who was ironically assigned to Albion Plaza and on duty when he was killed.
In April 2018, a state witness, Paul Rajcoomar, 41, was shot multiple times about his head and body. He succumbed to his injuries hours after while undergoing emergency treatment at the Port-of-Spain General Hospital. Rajcoomar, who was at the time standing on the road near Albion Plaza, was approached by a vehicle. Its occupant got out and shot him several times. The gunman escaped.
Investigations are continuing.