Crime — 18 June 2013 — by Albert J. Ciego

Three men are lucky to be alive after they were shot in two separate shooting incidents in the city. One man was shot multiple times in his house by two masked men, while the other two men were shot while walking on Pine Street.

The shooting victims are Arturo Varela of Antelope Street Extension, Rafael Francisco Aguet of Pine Street, Belize City, and Cecil Gill, also of Pine Street. The shootings both occurred in Belize City on Tuesday, June 11.

Varela told police that about 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, as he was about to exit his yard, he saw two men putting masks on their faces inside his mother-in-law’s yard (she lives next door to him). He quickly ran back into his house, but the masked men ran after him, and as he shut the door, they kicked it open and one of them opened fire and the he was hit by gunshots several times.

The men then ran out and escaped. Varela was rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where he was treated before being released.

Varela told police that the incident occurred shortly after he became involved in a dispute with his common-law wife at his home. He was going out when he saw the gunmen putting on their masks.

After investigation, police detained four men for questioning.

Shortly after Varela was shot, at about 7:15 p.m. on Tuesday, two other men, Cecil Gill and Rafael Francisco Aguet, were shot in a separate incident. Aguet received a gunshot wound in the nose and in the left foot, while Gill suffered a gunshot wound in the left shoulder.

Police reports are that the two men were walking on Pine Street heading home from the direction of Ebony Street, when suddenly a man came up to the corner of Hondo and Ebony Streets and fired at them. The gunman then escaped.

Gill and Aguet were rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where they were admitted to ward. Their condition has been listed as serious, but stable. Police have launched an investigation, but have not yet found the shooter.

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