BUENA VISTA VILLAGE, Corozal District, Tues. June 1, 2021– On Tuesday, June 1, a fatal road traffic accident on the Philip Goldson Highway claimed the life of a US national. According to reports, sometime around 1:00 p.m. that day, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), Aaron Guzman, was heading in the direction of Orange Walk to procure vehicle parts for his government-issued vehicle that was being serviced. A vehicle being driven by an American national, reportedly heading in the opposite direction, was in the process of overtaking another vehicle, when the driver lost control of the vehicle, ultimately crashing into ACP Guzman’s car near Bella Vista village.
When interviewed after the incident, ACP Guzman explained, “There was a pickup truck heading in the opposite direction of me. A small gray car was trying to overtake the pickup, but when it realized it was not going to overtake the pickup, it tried to go back into the lane. The car then swung out, and it was skating towards me. I started to drive off-road, applied brakes and closed my eyes. It happened in a split second, and the lady was already in my lane at the time.”
Guzman noted that, at the scene of the incident, many of the nearby motorists and inhabitants of the area came to render help. He said, “The guy in the pickup truck that she was trying to overtake stopped and I spoke to him and we decided to check on the lady, but she was unconscious. Another man from a nearby house ran and tried to open the door, but it was jammed. Another guy of Creole descent then came to me and took out a water bottle and wet my hand and face and asked if I was alright.”
Guzman stated that he then contacted the local police. First responders later arrived at the scene and pronounced the woman to be dead. An ambulance then took Guzman to a hospital, where he provided urine samples and received a checkup following the crash.
A police superintendent who was near the scene of the crash was instructed by Commissioner of Police, Chester Williams to carry out a search of the vehicle that Guzman had been driving. Following the search, the police superintendent noted that the vehicle contained goods that were suspected to be contraband; however, ACP Guzman has provided receipts showing that he had purchased such items from local vendors in a booth near 24/7 Mart in Corozal.
Commissioner Williams has since assigned Assistant Commissioner of Police Alden Dawson to serve as the lead investigator on the case. Williams asserts that the department will be investigating the issue impartially and has directed ACP Dawson to follow the procedures and protocols established for all road traffic incidents. Commissioner Williams has informed ACP Guzman of his decision and the need for cooperation, and Guzman has committed to being fully cooperative.
At the time of the incident, ACP Guzman was driving a government vehicle issued to ACP Bart Jones. Reports indicate that while Guzman has been emotionally shaken following the incident, he remains in good health.