Headline — 03 March 2015 — by Albert J. Ciego
Bloody Sunday in the City: 4 shot, 2 killed, 1 critical, 1 recovering

BELIZE CITY, Mon. Mar. 2, 2015–Four people were shot in the seemingly never-ending violence in Belize City yesterday and as a result, two persons are dead, one man is in critical condition in the intensive care unit at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital and another victim is recovering at his home after he was treated for gunshot wounds, and released from the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital.

The two gunshot victims who lost their lives are Michael Welch, 24, of Maxboro, Sandhill Village; and Japheth Martinez, 23, of Y and M Street, in the Lake Independence area, while Emmanuel Chavarria, 26, of West Canal Street is in a critical condition and Kingsley Morrison has been treated and is recovering at home.

The city’s bloody Sunday began with the shooting of Emmanuel Chavarria, who was shot in the left side of the chest and left hand at about 12:07 yesterday morning, Sunday, shortly after midnight, on West Canal, just as he had driven up to his house and was getting out of his car, by a gunman who came from Rocky Road into West Canal and rode up towards Chavarria before firing at him. He was rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where he was admitted in a critical condition.

Police have launched an investigation into the attempted murder of Chavarria, but so far no one has been arrested or detained.

The second person to be shot was Japheth Martinez, at about 7:00 yesterday evening, Sunday. He was shot multiple times in the chest and body and was rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where he died about 30 minutes later.

Martinez was riding his bicycle on Alicia Street, towards a Chinese store located at the corner of Alicia Street and Estelle Street, when a man rode up behind him and began firing at him. He tried to escape, but the gunman rode behind him, shooting. The killer then escaped from the area and Martinez was rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where he died about 30 minutes later, at about 7:35 p.m.

Police describe Martinez’s killer as being a person of fair complexion with a corn row hairstyle and he was reportedly wearing a grey shirt.

The third and fourth shooting victims were shot about four hours later, at about 11:30 last night, Sunday. Michael Welch, 24, of Sandhill, and Kingsley Morrison, 23, of Periwinkle Street, were socializing in Morrison’s yard when two men rode up and fired at them. The shooters then escaped out of the area.

Welch was hit multiple times in the chest and upper body and Morrison was shot in his right upper shoulder.

The two friends were rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. Welch died at about 11:50, less than 20 minutes after he was shot.

Kingsley Morrison was admitted in a stable condition. He was treated for his injuries and has since been released from the hospital and is recovering at his home.

In a press briefing conducted this afternoon at the Racoon Street Police Station, it was announced that extra patrols and other measures will be employed to try to contain the surge in deadly violence.

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