Headline — 21 December 2012 — by Albert J. Ciego
Christmas sorrow – 3 teenagers shot dead in two hours

The ages of the victims are: 14, 16 and 19

Instead of partaking in joy and laughter in this festive season, three families are mourning the death of three teenagers who were callously shot to death in separate incidents just six days before Christmas.

Robert Allan Gladden, 16, a student of Marage Road, Ladyville; Raheem Requeña, 19, of Plues Street; and Reynaldo Garrido, 14, of East Canal, were shot in three different locations in the city within a span of two hours, between 6:45 p.m. and 8:45 p.m. on Wednesday, December 19.

Police said that about 6:30 p.m. yesterday, Wednesday, they went to the corner of Partridge and Lavender Streets and saw Gladden’s body lying face down in the middle of the unpaved road. He had been shot in the right side of the back of the head and in his forehead, above his left eye.

Police say that Gladden was walking on Partridge Street, going toward Lavender Street, when a man of dark complexion with dreadlocks approached on a bicycle and fired two shots at him, and rode into Partridge Street, escaping into the surrounding area.

Police put Gladden in the back of a police mobile unit and took him to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH), where he was declared dead on arrival, at about 7:45 p.m.

Police, in a press briefing today, announced that no one had been arrested as yet for the murder.

Raheem Requeña, 19, of Plues Street, was riding a bicycle on Kut Avenue about 8:15 that evening, shortly after Gladden was killed on Partridge Street. His grandmother, Esmay Requeña, later told Amandala that Raheem was heading to her house to visit her.

According to police reports, however, four gunshots were fired. Requeña was shot in the side of his chest and fell down. A witness immediately took him to the KHMH, but he was pronounced dead on arrival, at about 8:25 p.m.

The family said that they were at home when a man came to their house and told them that Raheem had been shot. The mother and other members of the family went to the KHMH, and saw him, but he was already dead. The family says that they are at a loss as to why he was killed. His aunt said that he was friendly, easygoing and not a troublemaker.

The family is in intense mourning. Raheem’s aunt, who says she is so devastated by the death that she is unable to eat, said he had never complained that his life was in danger, or that he was being threatened. His aunt said that his mother only had two children; Requeña was the elder, and now he is gone.

The grandmother, Esmay Requeña, said that she too is devastated. She had watched him grow from a baby into young adulthood, and did not expect that he would die before she did. She could not think of a reason for his murder.

So far, no one has been arrested for his murder.

Raheem Requeña is survived by his mother, Derona; father, Anthony; grandmother, Esmay Requeña; one sister, 6 aunts, 14 uncles, and many relatives and friends.

About twenty minutes after Requeña was pronounced dead, at about 8:45, Reynaldo Reymundo Garrido, 15, was riding his bicycle with his cousin on East Canal, going towards Racecourse Street. When they reached South Street Bridge, a man rode up on a bicycle from South Street and shot Garrido below his chin, and below his right eye.

The shooter then rode back into South Street towards Plues and George Streets and disappeared. The shooter was described as being of dark complexion, and dressed in a white T-shirt. He wore a red peaked cap, witnesses said.

Police who processed the scene said that one expended shell was found.

Neighbors who know Garrido said that he was not a troublemaker, and that he may have been killed due to mistaken identity. They said that he and his cousins would go to the Yabra field and play football every evening, or they would help their parents, who are tacos vendors, prepare food for sale. The neighbors said that they are at a loss as to why he was killed.

Again, no one has yet been arrested for this murder. Police say that anyone who has information about the murders can call 0800 TIPS, or the nearest police station.

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