Jul 14, 2013 Murder and Mystery
By Michael Jordan
There just might be one thing worse than having someone murder a loved one of yours. It’s having that loved one seemingly vanish from the face of the earth, leaving behind just little, sinister clues about their fate, leaving you with both hope and dread every time the phone rings.
There’s one family that is living this nightmare now.
They are the relatives of young LeVoy Taljit, who disappeared almost seven months ago.
Taljit had previously worked at the Guyana Revenue Authority before becoming employed with the Guyana Energy Agency.
On Sunday December 23, 2012, the 25-year-old dressed in a burgundy tee shirt and a pair of faded blue jeans. He then drove off from his home in a Toyota Raum, PNN 8315.
Taljit’s close relatives became concerned when he failed to return home. He did not show up the following day, neither did he contact anyone to inform them of his whereabouts.
It was not like Levoy to disappear and not contact his family. Concerned for his safety, family members contacted the police, and released a photograph of the missing man to the media.
A sister revealed that Taljit had recently started working with the Guyana Energy Agency (GEA). She said that she was unaware of any problem that he might have had with anyone.
She also said that her brother was not known to be involved in any “wrongdoing”.
Meanwhile, relatives and close friends organized a search party but failed to find Taljit.
On Friday, December 28, some residents of Yarrowkabra were walking along a trail about a mile off the Soesdyke/Linden Highway when they spotted an abandoned Toyota Raum. They contacted the police, who checked the licence plates and confirmed that the vehicle was Taljit’s.
Detectives observed that the vehicle’s battery, keys and some of the electronic equipment were missing. But Crime Scene ranks found no evidence suggesting that Taljit had come to harm.
The absence of fresh footprints at the scene seemed to suggest that the vehicle was taken to the location about three days prior to its discovery.
Police scoured the Yarrowkabra backlands for several hours without finding a trace of the missing man. As with previous disappearances, the absence of tracker dogs severely hampered their efforts.
Police finally received a crucial break. Someone was using the missing man’s cell phone. Phone records revealed that a call had been made in the vicinity of Marudi, on the Soesdyke/Linden highway, the day before Taljit’s vehicle was found.
Shortly after, police traced the calls to a Soesdyke residence. They then detained a 32-year-old man, who they found in possession of Taljit’s phone. The man, Sherwin Francis, had reportedly inserted a new SIM card in the device, apparently not realizing that the phone could still be traced when activated.
According to the police, Francis also handed over a bank card to the investigators, after taking them to a house where he had stashed it. The bank card belonged to Taljit.
Detectives found out that Francis had withdrawn some $50,000 from Taljit’s bank account.
On being questioned, Sherwin Francis reportedly admitted to stashing Taljit’s vehicle on the Soesdyke/Linden highway, but claimed that this was done on the missing man’s behest.
He also claimed that the missing GEA staffer owed him money and had given him the bank card.
Police say that Francis alleged that he and Taljit were friends. It was said that the two men communicated extensively via an internet site.
According to police sources, he also alleged that Taljit visited his home shortly before his disappearance. It was alleged that the GEA employee had a bag of money and asked the suspect to hide the Toyota Raum.
Francis is said to have initially told detectives that the missing GEA staffer was alive and well and had spoken to him from Paramaribo, Suriname. However, he reportedly eventually admitted that this was a fabrication.
Francis’s story left detectives even more concerned about the missing man’s fate. Again, they scoured the Soesdyke/Linden backlands for any trace of Levoy Taljit. They found nothing.
The investigators also checked computer records in the hope of unearthing any evidence about Taljit’s whereabouts. This effort was also fruitless.
Although Francis had reportedly admitted to using Taljit’s phone, had claimed to have stashed the GEA employee’s vehicle, was in possession of his bank card, and had even withdrawn money, police apparently still could not definitively tie him to Taljit’s disappearance. After all, they had no idea whether Taljit was alive or dead.
They eventually released Francis and the matter is apparently at a standstill.
Sherwin Francis’s mother declined to comment on her son’s possible connection to Taljit’s disappearance when I spoke to her this week.
Taljit’s mother told me that she had spoken to Francis’s mother, who denied that her son was involved in Taljit’s disappearance.
Does she think her son is still alive?
“I don’t know what to think,” she said. “I have no clue. The only thing I can do is pray…whatever is His will, I will have to accept.”
If you have any information about this or any other case, please contact us by phone or mail at our Lot 24 Saffon Street, Charlestown offices. Our telephone numbers are 22-58465, 22-58491 and 22-58473. You need not disclose your identity.
You can also contact Michael Jordan via email at [email protected]
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