Two more deaths under different circumstances have rocked Guyana’s interior, stretching the number of killings in that part of the country to more than 30 as the year comes to a close.
In one case, police shot and killed a man who they said had engaged them in gun fire in the Puruni Backdam, while in the other instance, a miner was chopped to death during a drunken row at Madhia.
Both incidents occurred on Christmas Day.
Police in a press release said that about 14:00 hours on Saturday, a police roving patrol comprising ranks of the Tactical Services Unit along with ranks of “E & F” Division were on anti-crime patrol in the Puruni Backdam when they were called upon to respond to a report of threats being made by a man armed with a gun.
On seeing the police approaching, the man who was known as ‘Douglah’ pulled out a firearm and discharged several rounds at the police who returned fire hitting him to his body.
The man collapsed and the ranks converged on him.
During a search on his person, an unlicensed 9mm. pistol with four matching rounds and a quantity of cocaine were found.
A miner assisted the police in transporting the man to the Bartica Hospital, a journey of five hours, where he was pronounced dead on arrival. A party of police ranks led by a senior detective is in the area conducting further investigations.
Kaieteur News understands that the police had received several reports in connection with the activities of the dead man, including reports that he acted as an enforcer for persons in the interior.
And two hours after that incident, miner Orin Francis, 24, of Lethem was killed by another man in the Konawaruk Backdam.
According to the police around 16:00 hours, Francis and a Brazilian national were imbibing during which an argument developed between them.
Francis was allegedly chopped to his left hand. He was taken to the Mahdia Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival.
The suspect has not yet been arrested.
In an invited comment, Divisional Commander, David Ramnarine, yesterday told this newspaper that of the 33 reports of murder in the interior district more than half were classified as disorderly, where persons lost their cool.
“Men are killing men, women are killing women. The majority of these murders are occurring in the mining districts where there is the widespread uncontrolled, unregulated sale of alcohol,” the Commander said.
He stopped short of confirming that the murders in the interior represented the highest number in the entire country when broken down into police divisions.
During a recent address at the police annual end of year awards ceremony, Police Commissioner Henry Greene, while highlighting the outstanding work done by the police in the interior, pointed out that the area is the most challenging for law enforcement because of the vastness of the territory.
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