Headline — 09 March 2019 — by Albert J. Ciego
Number of murders for 2019, up to 5TH March: 24

BELIZE CITY, Wed.  Mar. 6, 2019– Our records reveal that 24 persons have been murdered in Belize in the first 64 days of 2019. The most recent murder occurred in Belize City on Sunday morning, March 3. Police said that the 24th victim, Walter Beaton, a 48-year-old taxi driver of Reggae Street, drove up to his yard and was opening his gate to drive in his car when his killer, who was waiting for him in his yard, shot him multiple times.

2019 began on a terrible note, with five murders on New Year’s Day. Howard Coleman, 58, of Maskall, was chopped to death in his house at about 4:00 New Year’s morning.

At about 6:00 o’clock that same morning, 23-year-old Jaimi Martinez, of Buena Vista, was found floating in the Mopan River, near Blackman Eddy, Cayo District. His autopsy showed that he had been strangled to death.

Ten hours later, Joseph Babb, 21, of the Lake Independence area in  Belize City, was shot and killed on Blue Marlin Drive, Belize City. Also, Anita Pineda, 21, a mother of 3, was stabbed to death by her common-law husband at about 7:30 p.m., in Cayo.

The fifth murder of the New Year, 2019, occurred on New Year’s night when Preston Bevans, 24, of Neal Pen Road, Belize City, was shot in his head while riding on his bicycle (where).

Ten days later, on January 10, Police Corporal Alfonso Guy, 51, of Benque Viejo, was shot in the police barracks in San Pedro. Two days later, on January 12, a watchman on Mapp Caye (name), was found decomposing in a toilet facility on the island after he had been shot in the head.

Also, on January 12, Jose Manuel Ayala, 29, was shot several times while in his vehicle near Mile 4 on the George Price Highway.

Fourteen days later, on the evening of January 26, Johvanney Tablada, 23, of Neal Pen Road in Belize City, was shot multiple times and died immediately while attending a party on Fabers Road.

Four hours after Tablada was killed, at about 12:30 Sunday morning, January 27, businessman Michael Alexander Williams, 52, pulled up in his vehicle at his girlfriend’s house on North Front Street and let her out. Two men fired at him after the female got out of the car. He died almost immediately.

Two days later, on January 29, Jerdy Flores became murder victim number 11 when he was shot multiple times at his home on Far West Street, Punta Gorda.

The next day, January 30, Elmer Salazar, 31, was chopped to death at a marina off the George Price Highway, after an argument with a co-worker.

Four days later, on the evening of Sunday, February 3, Shawn Hemmans, 33, a tour guide, was shot and killed at a house on St. Thomas Street.

On February 7, Alfredo Gonzalez, 61, was shot in the head and body in Buena Vista, Cayo District. He later died from his injuries.

That same day, Masaki Yanai, 18, and his father, Takasuky Yanai, were both shot by robbers while in their yard. Masaki died almost immediately. His father survived.

Two days later, on February 9, basketball star Dwayne Cummings was shot in the head in Orange Walk Town.

On February 10, Dwight Avila, 20, was shot and killed at a house on San Martin Street in Orange Walk Town.

On the evening of Wednesday, February 13, an American couple, Elizabeth Rousseau and Gary Hakes, were attacked and stabbed in their home. Rousseau, 73, succumbed to her injuries.

That same day, February 13, Roy Lord, Jr., became murder victim number 19 when he was shot and killed while walking on Wilson Street in Belize City.

Eleven days later, on the morning of Sunday, February 24, Edward Conorquie, 22, of Belize City, was found lying on the roadside in Independence, Stann Creek District, with gunshot wounds in his head and back.

That same day, Kevin Moro and Oscar Humes were both shot and killed on George Price Street in Punta Gorda.

At about 11:30 in the morning, Saturday, March 2, the body of Joan Sharen Gabourel was found in a cane field in Valley of Peace, Cayo District. She had been chopped to death. She was the 23rd murder victim of this year.

The murder of taxi driver, Walter Beaton, 48, on March 3, pushed the death toll to 24.

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