A Haslington, East Coast Demerara man who was wanted for the rape of a 15-year old girl was yesterday shot dead by police at Kuru Kuru on the Linden/Soesdyke Highway. Police said that a police rank had resorted to the use of force when he was attacked by the man, Joel Ross, while in the process of arresting him.
According to the police, Ross went into hiding after committing the act on the teenager on Easter Monday at Haslington.
Kaieteur News understands that the police received information that Ross was hiding out at a location on the highway and went after him yesterday just after midday.
“At about 12:30 hours today (Tuesday)…, Joel Ross, who was armed with a cutlass, attacked a policeman who was in the process of arresting him at Kuru Kuru, Soesdyke/Linden Highway. This caused the rank to resort to the use of force and Joel Ross was shot to his body. He succumbed to his injuries.
Joel Ross was wanted in relation to a matter of rape committed at Haslington, ECD, on April 21, 2014,” a police press release stated.
“We never got to put the (rape) allegation to him because he ran out of Haslington,” a police source said.
Relatives of the dead man were informed of his death late yesterday afternoon when they were contacted by this newspaper. They said that although Ross was no angel, he was not stupid to attack an armed policeman with a cutlass.
The relatives were however not surprised that Ross was wanted by the police since they claimed that he was always running from the law for some reason or the other.
One female relative told this newspaper that the last time she saw him was a few days before Easter Monday last when he returned to Haslington from Berbice. The woman informed that Ross had fled the village a few years ago after getting into trouble with the police and had settled in Berbice.
However he fled the Ancient County and returned to Haslington after his reputed wife called in the police when he violated a restraining order.
Relatives told this newspaper that they were unaware of the recent rape allegation against Ross.
They claimed that he told them that he had landed a job on the highway and they were glad that he would somehow be out of trouble; they were wrong.
“Like after de raping, he went to Kuru Kuru to work with some pig man,” a close relative told this newspaper.
The relative said that yesterday she learnt of his death after she received a telephone call from Ross’ brother with whom he was living with in Enmore shortly before he left for the highway.
“Since I hear highway, I say is true, because is deh he get away and go,” the woman said.
This newspaper spoke to the owner of the pig farm at Yarrowkabra where Ross was a temporary worker at the time of his death. The man said that he had employed Ross temporarily to cover for his usual farm hand who had requested some leave.
The farm owner who resides on the East Coast of Demerara said that up to late yesterday he was unaware that Ross had been shot dead. He said that he was shocked by the news, since he had spoken to Ross earlier yesterday.
“I was to take in his wife, but I could not make contact with her via telephone. When I called back the man yesterday, the police from Timehri answered the phone and said that they wanted to see me. I told them that I was on the East Coast, but they did not tell me what had happened. All they said was that I should make contact with them,” the farm owner told Kaieteur News.
He informed that from all indications Ross had left the farm at Yarrowkabra, since according to the police he was killed at Kuru Kuru, which is located several miles away.
Ross’ relatives have not yet identified the body, which is presently lying at a city mortuary awaiting a post mortem examination.
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