A 41-year-old canecutter was knifed to death in an alleyway at Beterverwagting, East Coast Demerara, at around 14:20 hrs yesterday, during an altercation with his 25-year-old nephew.
Andrew Benjamin, called “Mongoose”, of Lot 66 Friendship, East Coast Demerara, collapsed from multiple stab wounds to the upper body and succumbed before he could receive medical attention at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC).
The nephew reportedly fled the scene, but was subsequently detained and taken to the GPHC with a wound to the head, which he alleges to have sustained during the altercation with the victim.
Kaieteur News understands that he has been hospitalized with a suspected fractured skull.
According to relatives and neighbours, the altercation began shortly after Benjamin, a canecutter employed at La Bonne Intention Sugar Factory, paid a visit to a niece who lives at Canterbury Walk, Beterverwagting. The nephew who allegedly killed Benjamin also resides at the home and he reportedly became annoyed when he arrived and saw the uncle there.
“He come and see de uncle and he get vex, but “Mongoose”, being a quiet person, just get up and started to leave” one relative said.
But according to reports, the nephew continued to argue and asked Benjamin “if he wanted to fight”.
A scuffle ensued between the two. They were eventually separated, and the uncle was heard admonishing the nephew and informing him that he was leaving.
According to eyewitnesses, the nephew ran upstairs and armed himself with a knife.
Benjamin, eyewitnesses said, was walking through an alleyway, when the nephew, still armed with the knife, pursued his uncle and again challenged him to fight.
Although he was carrying his cutlass, Benjamin once more opted to caution his nephew, but the suspect reportedly pushed the uncle and began to stab him.
Eyewitnesses said that Benjamin attempted to ward off the attack with his cutlass, but the nephew continued to stab him, even as screaming onlookers pleaded with him to stop.
One neighbour said that it was only after Benjamin collapsed in a drain that they realize that he was seriously injured.
Eyewitnesses rushed to Benjamin’s assistance and transported him to the Georgetown Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival. Meanwhile, the suspect left the scene, only to turn up at the GPHC in police custody with a wound to the head.
Police sources said that the nephew alleged that Benjamin was the aggressor. According to this report, the suspect claimed that he was at home when the uncle arrived. He has alleged that the dispute began when the phone rang and his uncle told him not to pick it up. However, the nephew alleged that he had already picked up the instrument, but then hung up and “sucked his teeth.”
According to his claim, Benjamin became annoyed and struck him on the head.
The nephew allegedly said that he retaliated by stabbing his uncle.
News of Benjamin’s sudden demise left relatives and neighbours in a state of disbelief.
The niece, whose home Benjamin had visited, was inconsolable and repeatedly fainted after she learnt that he had died.
The slain man’s children all described their father as a loving and quiet person who did not deserve to die in such a brutal manner.
According to his stepdaughter, they last saw Benjamin yesterday morning when he was leaving to go to Beterverwagting. She said that someone left a message informing them of the murder.
In contrast, relatives and neighbours described the nephew as an indisciplined individual who often fought with family members and residents.
According to one neighbour, the suspect had assaulted Benjamin’s niece on numerous occasions.
“He knock de girl like he is she father so we had to step in and tell he can’t do that and when he uncle talk to he, he want to fight with he uncle”.
“Nobody has anything to say to him because of his arrogant behavior,” one relative added.
Benjamin leaves to mourn his wife Marcel Joseph, three children, and six siblings.
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