Police are seeking Rodwell Arzu, 38
DANGRIGA, Stann Creek District, Mon. July 29, 2019– Geraldine Flowers, 41, a caregiver of Dangriga, originally from Mahogany Heights, Belize District, who had been enduring an abusive relationship with her boyfriend, Rodwell Arzu, 38, a laborer of Independence, was shot to death at about 6:00 yesterday morning.
Flowers’ family told us that she got the restraining order for Arzu, but he held on to a key to her house, and kept her cell phone.
At about 6:00 yesterday morning, Arzu went to her house in the New Site area of Dangriga, opened her house with the key he had kept, without her permission, and found a man in the living room of the house. The man was from Belize City and had gone to visit her.
Arzu then went into Flowers’ bedroom, where she was sleeping, and when she awoke, he began to quarrel with her, then he shot her multiple times.
Flowers’ guest rushed from the living room into the bedroom, where he struggled with Arzu, and during that struggle Arzu stabbed him, then shot him and escaped out of the house. The struggle had progressed from the bedroom back into the living room.
Neighbors who were alarmed by the gunfire and commotion coming from Flowers’ house called police.
When police went to the home, they saw a man identified as Samuel Reid, 36, (a relative of Flowers), in the living room. He had been shot and stabbed, and he was unconscious. He was rushed to the Southern Regional Hospital.
Police apparently had not looked in other areas of the house.
The family told us that in the hospital, Reid regained consciousness and screamed out the name of Geraldine, and police went back to the house and that was when they found Geraldine lying face-down on her bed, and she was already dead.
Reid was then rushed from the Southern Regional Hospital to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital for further treatment.
Ionie Waller, Geraldine’s younger sister, told us that the death of her sister is a double tragedy for Geraldine’s two children, ages 19 and 18, because their father, Geraldine’s husband, Kevin Flowers, 40, was shot to death in Mahogany Heights at about 6:00 on the morning of April 28, 2015, as he was riding his motorcycle through a shortcut to the George Price Highway to go to La Democracia, where he had been working.
The children now have no parents, she said. Waller told us that Geraldine had been living in Dangriga since October of last year, and that she was also a volunteer soldier for the Belize Defence Force, D Company.
Waller said that sometime before police reached Geraldine’s house, someone went into her house and snapped a photograph of her as she lay dead on her bed, and circulated it on Facebook. Waller said that it must have been a neighbor.
The family is calling on members of the public to respect her in death, to respect her children and her family, and to stop circulating the photo and to remove it from the pages of social media.
Flowers’ neighbors said that Flowers and Rodwell Arzu, her ex-boyfriend, had been living together, but he was cruel and abusive, and she reported the abuse and got a restraining order against him, and he was forced to move out of the house. Nevertheless, although Arzu reportedly was living with another woman, he often went to Flowers’ house and harassed her.
On the morning of the shooting, he went to the house and afterwards, neighbours heard an argument, and then gunshots were heard, and they saw Arzu running out of Flowers’ house. He got into a vehicle and drove away.
Several expended shells were recovered in the house by police.
Police have begun a search for Rodwell Arzu, but as of press time this evening, he has not been found.
Rodwell Arzu is no stranger to the law. In Dangriga, on Thursday, January 29, 2015, Arzu was charged with aggravated assault with a firearm. He was taken to the Dangriga Magistrate’s Court and was remanded. The case, however, fell apart and he was acquitted.
Police said that on Friday, January 30, 2015, they found a car that had been reported stolen on Stanley Drive in Dangriga, and were observing the stolen car. A blue Trooper then pulled up and two men got out and went to the car, leaving the driver in the Trooper.
Police shouted at the two men, who were at that point next to the stolen car, not to move, but one of the men fired at them, and thereafter, two of them ran back into the Trooper and drove off.
Police immediately set chase and caught up with the Trooper near Teachers Street in Dangriga.
Two men jumped out of the Trooper, firing several times at the officers. The officers returned fire, but the two men escaped into the bushes.
The Trooper then sped off without the two men, and police continued the chase and caught up with the Trooper on an unknown street in the New Site area.
In an interview with Amandala, police reported that when they were able to stop the Trooper, they found the driver alone in the vehicle with an injury to his foot. He was taken to the police station, where he was identified as Rodwell Arzu.
Arzu was arrested and charged for aggravated assault in connection with the shooting, and was taken to the Southern Regional Hospital for treatment for his injury. Afterward, he was released back into police custody.