General — 16 January 2016 — by Johnelle McKenzie
Gunmen shoot pregnant teen and her mom

BELIZE CITY, Tues., Jan. 12, 2016–A mother and her pregnant daughter are fortunate to be alive after a barrage of bullets was fired upon their home at approximately 8:40 p.m. on Monday, January 11.

Shenell Rowland, 18, told Amandala that she lives at #9 Dolphin Street with her mom, Stephanie Smith, 41, her elder sister, 20, and her two younger brothers, 11 and 14.

Rowland said that her elder brother, 24, who lives with his grandmother, was sitting on the step outside of their home with a friend and playing games on the friend’s cellphone when the incident unfolded.

Rowland told us that she served her brother a plate of food. Shortly afterwards, her mom, Stephanie Smith, told her to send her brother home, since it was getting late. Before she could relay the message, though, shots were fired at them.

Her brother and his friend ran into the house and headed to the back room, and Rowland and her mom proceeded to close the door to prevent the gunmen from entering and to protect the children, but while doing so, they were both shot.

Rowland was shot in her abdomen and right leg, while Smith was shot in her abdomen.

Rowland took quick action by calling the police, who arrived on the scene within minutes and took Smith and Rowland to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH), where they were admitted for treatment.

Rowland, who is six months pregnant, was fortunate that the bullet, which penetrated the upper part of her abdomen and exited, did not injure her child.

Doctors at the KHMH managed to get the bullets out of Rowland’s leg and she was released at approximately 7:30 this morning, after spending an overnight in the hospital.

Rowland said her mom is still in the hospital. So far, the doctors have been unable to get out the bullet lodged in her stomach.

Police have detained four persons, including three minors, for the shooting, while they are looking for two other persons who they believe were involved.

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