BELIZE CITY. Tues. Jan. 4, 2022– On Monday, January 3, around 7:30 p.m., an execution of two men, which, in terms of the amount of firepower used, was almost military in scale, took place on the Maskall Road in Sandhill Village, Belize District. The victims were two Sandhill men who had been playing video games in the lower flat of a two-storey house — something that it was customary for the men in the neighborhood to do, according to the brother of one of the victims. Apparently, five of the men in the village had been participating in the video-gaming session, but three of them had left — leaving just two of the men, Raymond Dominguez, 36, and 21-year-old Justin Milligan, a well-known local football referee, immersed in the exercise. They were apparently so transfixed that they had left the door of the lower flat open, and it is through those doors that two gunmen entered and unleashed a blizzard of bullets. According to one media report, about thirty-three bullet shells would later be found on the ground, and were lying both inside and outside the house.
Currently, police are seeking the general public’s assistance in solving this murder. Persons with information that could be of assistance to the investigation are asked to call the 922 Crime Stoppers line.
Justin Milligan’s older brother, Mark Milligan, who is also a well-known football referee, told local media that he did not hear the gunshots but was called by a friend’s wife shortly after the incident and informed that his younger brother was shot. While he was running towards the property, someone informed him that his brother had passed away.
Justin Milligan was a graduate of the University of Belize and an avid footballer. He also served as a football referee — an activity that, according to his brother, he had taken a brief break from but was about to resume. It has been reported that he officiated many BDFA, CSSSA and FFB youth competitions.
“He went through university. He graduated from the UB with his Associate [degree]. He attempted to join the police, but he didn’t make it all the way to the end. He loved football; always spoke about playing football. Refereeing, myself and him, in my eyes, he was my best assistant referee,” Mark Milligan told local reporters.
“I’m sure it touched a lot of people because he’s very known. He’s a very jovial young man,” he further said.
According to 7News, “the Belize Football Referees Association, the Belize District Football Association, and the Central Secondary Schools Sports Association all join the FFB and the wider football fraternity in mourning his death.”
Milligan’s family does not know the reason for the vicious attack but, according to reports, the intended target may have been 36-year-old Dominguez.
Milligan and Dominguez have become the first two murder victims for 2022 — just three days into the New Year.