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T&T highest murder rate in 13 years

The date of this murder is not certain. Rachel Raymond’s body was discovered on January 4. Raymond, 17, of Lady Young Ave, Morvant, left her home on December 5 to go in search of a job. She never returned home.

Her partly decomposed body was found off Mandingo Road, Lengua Village, Princes Town. She was believed to have been raped and strangled.

Donaldson Forbes, 31, of Mandingo Road is charged with the murder.

November 21: Joseph Mader, 63, one of the founding officers of this country’s Coast Guard, was killed at his home, allegedly by bandits in search of a gun.

His son, Mark who was present during the ordeal, told police that three armed, masked bandits stormed their one-storey Barataria home sometime before 5 a.m. and overpowered and handcuffed Mader. Mark said he too, was tied up.

He said the bandits kept demanding a gun from Mader and when they got none, they beat both father and son.

The gunmen then placed duct tape on Mader’s mouth and nose which completely cut off his air supply. Death was due to asphyxiation.

Saddqui Martin, 23, of Malick and Shawn Lawrence 19, of Trou Macaque, are charged with the murder.

September 1: Eighty-two-year-old retired businessman Ousman Ali was found dead at his home.

Ali, founder of the Medicine Chest Pharmacy at West Mall, was discovered lying face down in his bed at his Coblentz, Cascade home by his son who arrived at the house to take him to a medical appointment.

His mouth was gagged and his hands and feet bound. Strips of a bedsheet and a pair of shoelace were used to tie Ali’s hands behind his back and his feet. He was strangled.

Although no items were missing from the house, police said robbery was most likely the motive.

A 23-year old man was arrested but no charges were laid.

December 11: Customs officer Carl De Souza was gunned down at his Tunapuna home in what police claim to be a “hit”. De Souza, 56, had been receiving threats during the last year. Around 8.45 p.m. on December 11 two men showed up at De Souza’s home on Auzonville Road and asked his son Carl Jr who was in the yard, to call “De Souzie”. As De Souza made his way outside to speak with the men he was shot. He collapsed in the arms of his son and died.

He was also a pastor.

No one has been charged.

December 12: Prison Officer Atwell Sandy jnr, 33, was shot dead by a lone gunman who went to his Trou Macaque home and asked to speak to the “prisons officer”.

Sandy, who had been watching television, was walking towards the gate to speak with the man and urging him to come in, when—in a similar fashion to the de Souza killing—his killer whipped out a gun and fired several shots at him at point blank range.

Sandy was taken to the Port of Spain General Hospital where he subsequently died.

No one has been charged.

June 2: The body of former PNM MP Roy Richardson, 78, was found at his Clifton Hill Point Fortin Home with his head bashed in and stab wounds about his body.

He was discovered lying on his left side in a bedroom, with his head bashed in by a frying pan. The bloody utensil was found in the kitchen. He had three stab wounds to his chest, a cut on this left hand and a stab wound to the abdomen. A kitchen knife which was believed to have been used in the killing was found in a garbage bag outside a fast food outlet in Point Fortin. Richardson’s licensed Daby Browning .25mm gun and four rounds of .25 mm ammunition were stolen.

Couple Rocky Mohammed, 19, and Estina Bedassie, 18, both of Coromandel Village, Cedros, are charged with the murder.

Kathleen Guiseppi

Kathleen Guiseppi went missing on May 21. She was found dead in the trunk of her car in the carpark at Centre City Mall,
Chaguanas, on May 23.

Common-law-wife of UWI professor George Melville, the 35-year-old Guiseppi left her Glencoe Heights Home to go the Dentistry School at Mt. Hope where she worked as an administrative assistant. She never arrived. Guiseppi was found with her throat slit. She had also been stabbed several times about her body. Her nose and mouth were covered with duct tape. The $7,000 in cash which, on the day of her disappearance, she had borrowed from a credit union to do repairs to her car, was stolen. Her assailant also stole her cellular phone. He made a call from the phone shortly after noon on the day she went missing. The post mortem confirmed that Guiseppi, 43, died from “multiple sharp traumatic injuries and smothering”.

Sean Roberts, 35, Picton Road, Laventille has been charged.

December 13: The bodies of British-born environmentalist John Cropper, 56, his sister-in-law Lynette Persad-Lithgow, 51, and mother-in-law Maggie Lee, 83, were found in Cropper’s ransacked house at Mt Anne Drive, Cascade.

Cropper, along with his mother and sister-in-law, were tied and gagged with cloth before their throats were slit. Investigators described the triple murder as macabre.

The bodies were found in a bathroom of the house.

Two men, Lester Pitman, 23, and Daniel Agard, 18, have been charged with the triple murders.

May 5: The chopping to death of four people in Mundo Nuevo on was described as the first incident of a family massacre of such proportion since four members of the Baboolal family were murdered by Dole Chadee and his gang in Williamsville in 1994.

Post mortems confirmed that the victims—Katherine Garcia, 62, his daughter-in-law Alicia James, 27, and his two grandchildren, Dillon 9 and Giselle 4, had been stabbed and chopped several times by their killer. Nine-year-old Dillon was a disabled mute paraplegic confined to a wheelchair. He was stabbed twice and then chopped several times about his body. He was also stabbed under the armpit and neck. Investigators said, judging by the pattern of the blood trail, James’s ordeal began in the bedroom of the house. She then ran through the house and exited through the galvanised iron annex to the north of the house and fell into the drain. They said she was still being chopped even as she laid dead in the drain.

Katherine Garcia and little Giselle’s were chopped to death in the galvanised annex near Dillon. They were killed because of a grouse the assailant had with another family member.

A 35-year-old man has been charged.

November 12: 77-year-old Estha Vidale’s naked body was found at her home by a neighbour. A Seventh Day Adventist who religiously attended church every Saturday, Vidale’s naked body was covered with a sheet, lying face up and her mouth gagged with a pink and white underwear. She was raped and strangled.

Police found evidence that that the assailant went into the kitchen and ate a piece of sweet bread and some stewed chicken wings, before leaving the scene.

A 25-year-old man was being sought for questioning. No one has been charged.

From the Trinidad Express

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