Murder Toll 2021

Fifteen people were killed between Friday night and yesterday, catapulting the 2021 murder toll to two short of 400.

Venezuelan national Juan Antonio Larez, who resides in Curepe, died at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex in Mt Hope on Sunday.

He had been hospitalised since Friday night when he had been admitted for stab injuries.

Police were told he was at a bar in the area when he got into a confrontation, during which the assailant stabbed Larez several times about the body and fled the scene.

The injured man was taken to the medical complex but he died on Sunday.

The other 14 persons were killed between November 19 and November 21, and included PC Jomo Gulston, 37, and Coast Guard officer Jabari Francois, 33.

And a Morvant man was shot and killed at his home on Sunday morning.

Police said around 12.40 a.m. residents of Cipriani Avenue, Second Caledonia, Morvant, heard gunshots emanating from the home of Ronnie Samuel.

When the shooting stopped several of Samuel’s neighbours went over to his home and found him with multiple gunshot wounds in the back yard of the house.

They contacted the Morvant police who called for an ambulance following which Samuel was taken to the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, Mt Hope, where he died.

These killings pushed the murder toll for 2021 up to 398. The comparative figure for the same period was 367.

Speaking with the Express yesterday, Deputy Commissioner of Police McDonald Jacob noted while there were more killings this year—an estimated 8.5 per cent increase —an estimated 35 per cent of these killings were from domestic encounters over suspicion of infidelity and disputes over property.

He, therefore, reiterated his belief that conflict resolution was needed in this country to manage violence.

“This is why the TTPS has launched initiatives such as the Community Justice Clinic (CJC), to provide free legal advice and services to communities throughout the country.

“We have recognised that there is a greater prevalence of domestic issues that may be unreported or unaddressed, and as such, this initiative, and others of mediation will not only provide free legal advice, but will serve as a significant crime-fighting mechanism that can be used to reduce the incidence of violent crime in the country,” Jacob said.

recent Homicides:

1. November 19: Aaron Thomas. Shot dead along Block 22, Trou Macaque, Laventille. Three suspects held.

2. November 19: Garvin Pantor, 43. Shot dead at his home along St John’s Road, East Dry River.

3. November 20: Marvin James, 30. Shot dead during a robbery gone wrong along the Churchill-Roosevelt Highway in Aranjuez.

4 & 5. November 20: Jada Felician, 15, and Jordan Pierre, 27. Both shot dead in Belmont on their way home.

6. November 20: Kendell Williams, 29. Shot and killed near his home in Marabella while getting a haircut.

7. November 20: Unidentified man found dead off Bunsee Trace, Penal. The body bore gunshot wounds to the head..

8. November 21: Charles Matta, 22. Venezuelan national who was stabbed to death in Freeport.

9 & 10. November 21: PC Jomo Gulston, Coast Guard officer Jabari Francois. The two killed each other in a shoot-out in Diego Martin.

11. November 21: Ronnie Samuel, 43. Shot dead at his home in Cipriani Avenue, Morvant.

12. November 21: Jose Mariano Acosta Bella. Shot dead during a robbery at his home along Temple Street, Arima.

13. November 21: Darrius Roberts. Died after a shooting along Esmeralda Street, Cunupia.

14. November 21: Juan Antonio Larez. Venezuelan national dies at hospital. He was stabbed on Friday night in a confrontation in Curepe.

15. November 21: Kendell John, 32. Shot dead near his home along La Retreat Road, Arima.

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Twenty-six additional Covid-19 deaths reported yesterday took the death toll for the first five days of December past 100.

The 26 deaths increased fatalities this month to 104. The death toll since the start of the pandemic in Trinidad and Tobago is now 2,262.

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