Crime Headline — 14 September 2012 — by Albert J. Ciego
Police say Harth Gillett killed himself over girlfriend

The ex-policeman, police say, told the woman that she would leave him “over his dead body”

BELIZE CITY, Thurs. Sept. 13, 2012

A businessman, who is an ex-policeman of San Ignacio, is dead, and the coroner has ruled suicide.

Harth Evan Gillett, 45, was shot once in the head at his home on Orange Street in San Ignacio around 9:30 p.m. on Tuesday, September 11. He was rushed to the San Ignacio Hospital, where he was initially treated, and then rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where he was declared brain dead on arrival. Around 3:05 p.m. on Wednesday, September 12, he died while undergoing treatment.

Doctor Mario Estradabran, who conducted the autopsy today, Thursday, concluded that the cause of death was “traumatic shock due to severe brain damage due to head trauma due to gunshot wound.”

Police said that around 9:55 p.m. Tuesday, they went to the San Ignacio home of Harth Evan Gillett where they saw him lying face up on the floor of his house near the front door in a pool of blood, gasping for air. A 9mm pistol and an expended shell were seen on the floor beside him.

Police said that Gillett was going through a domestic dispute with his common-law wife, Jacqueline Ibbarra, 24, and he wanted them to talk over the problem.

They got into an argument that reportedly lasted about 30 minutes, and during the argument, police said, Gillett told Ibbarra that if she left him, he would not be able to live without her, and if she wanted to leave, it would be over his dead body.

The woman told police that Gillett then advanced towards the front door of the house with his back towards her. He pulled out his licensed 9mm pistol, put it at the right side of his temple, and fired a single shot.

Police said that their investigations revealed that Gillett and Ibbarra had been arguing since Monday, September 10. On Tuesday night, Ibbarra, it seems, decided to end the relationship.

However, Gillett’s wife, Rosalind, whom he had left for Ibbarra, was not convinced that he killed himself. She said that Gillett was in contact with both her mother and sister earlier that night, and there was no sign that he was troubled.

Furthermore, she insisted, Gillett was shot in the left side of the head, but he was right-handed, which would make it highly unlikely that he was the one who pulled the trigger.

When asked about the size of the wound on the right side of his head, Doctor Estradabran said the gunshot was at close range, and that was why the entry wound was so much bigger than the exit wound. It would explain, he said, why the exit wound, which was on the left side of the head, was being mistaken for the entry wound, because of its size. Normally, the entry wound would be smaller than the exit wound.

Harth Gillett is the father of four children. He is also survived by his wife, Rosalind; three sisters; seven brothers; one grandchild; and a host of relatives and friends.

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