By Michael Jordan
The case involving the disappearance of secondary school teacher Nyozi Goodman took another bizarre turn
yesterday, when taxi driver Royston Waldron, the prime suspect in the investigation, was shot dead by police, reportedly after exiting his car with his hands raised.
Eyewitnesses said that Waldron, an ex-policeman of Lot 38 Public Road, Kitty, was shot twice in the chest at around 12.15 hrs, shortly after police ranks in two cars stopped him in the vicinity of Thomas and Alexander Streets.
He succumbed some 30 minutes later at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation.
Police detained two other men who were with Waldron, and said that the slain man and his accomplices were suspects in a number of armed robberies.
A police release stated that at around 12.15 hrs yesterday, police ranks intercepted a car at Alexander and Thomas Streets, Kitty, with three men who were wanted for questioning in connection with a number of armed robberies and during which gunfire was opened on the police.
“The police returned fire, hitting Royston Waldron, 38, of Public Road, Kitty, from whom an unlicensed .32 pistol with four rounds and a spent shell was recovered. He was taken to the GPHC where he succumbed while receiving medical treatment.
“The two other men have been arrested and are in police custody assisting with investigations. Royston Waldron was convicted on charges of robbery under arms and was the prime suspect in the disappearances of Police Constable Patriena Nicholson and school teacher Nyozi Goodman,” the release added.
But persons who witnessed yesterday’s incident denied that Waldron had shot at the ranks, but said the policemen had
retrieved a firearm from the slain man.
One eyewitness told Kaieteur News that Waldron was driving a yellow hire car east along Thomas Street at around 12.00 hrs, when two cars blocked him from the front and rear.
The eyewitness said that men in plainclothes exited the vehicle and ordered the burly driver out of his car, while two passengers remained inside.
Kaieteur News was told that Waldron exited with hands upraised and one of the ranks shot him in the chest. Waldron collapsed to the roadway and the ranks shot him again, eyewitnesses and others said.
The eyewitness alleged that the police ranks began to assault Waldron’s accomplices. They then placed Waldron in his car and attempted to drive away, but the vehicle failed to start.
They then placed the motionless man in a police vehicle and left the scene, while Waldron’s taxi was towed away. Eyewitnesses said they observed the ranks removing a firearm from the shot man’s person.
Waldron is said to have been the last person to see 34-year-old St. Stanislaus College teacher Nyozi Goodman alive after dropping her off—and later picking her up—at the National Gymnasium on Mandela Avenue on Sunday, July 6, 2014.
Police had repeatedly questioned their former colleague about the woman’s whereabouts, but he had always proclaimed his innocence.
Kaieteur News understands that investigators felt that they had amassed substantial evidence against the taxi driver and had him under surveillance. They were reportedly planning to arrest and charge him once it was established that the skeletal remains that were found at Pattensen, Turkeyen, last August were Goodman’s.
Kaieteur News understands that Trinidad forensic experts have completed DNA tests on samples that were taken from
the remains and from Goodman’s relatives. However, police are still to uplift the samples.
For Goodman’s mother, Carol Green, Waldron’s death has left many questions unanswered about the circumstances surrounding her daughter’s disappearance.
“Only last night I was crying and asking God for answers. I said ‘thank you, Lord’, (on learning of the suspect’s demise) but then I thought ‘if he is dead, this case is at a standstill’. Whatever he knows is gone with him, because dead men tell no tales.”
“All we can wait for is the DNA results, and if they don’t match, that’s it.” Kaieteur News was told that a senior police official informed Mrs. Green of Waldron’s demise.
The St. Stanislaus College teacher disappeared after taking some of her students to the National Gymnasium, Mandela Avenue, to participate in the Inter-Secondary School Basketball Championships.
In late July, the skeletal remains of a woman were found in a bushy lot at Pattensen, on the East Coast of Demerara. Dr. Nehaul Singh established that the victim was about five feet, five inches tall, appeared to be of African ancestry and was between 25 and 40 years old.
Nyozi Goodman is also said to be five feet, five inches tall, and also had a ‘rotting’ tooth, which is a feature that was observed on the remains. Dr. Singh also found three incised wounds on the victim. A canvas belt was tied to the dead woman’s right arm, and some of Goodman’s relatives indicated that the belt was hers.
Mrs. Green believes that Waldron, the suspect, had contacted her anonymously by phone shortly after Nyozi’s disappearance. She said that the caller had indicated that he had information about her daughter, and they had agreed to meet at a fast food outlet in Georgetown.
She told Kaieteur News that detectives equipped her with a recorder which she concealed. But she said that when she reached at the destination and dialed the caller’s number, no one answered.
Afterwards, she recalled seeing a burly individual in a white jersey and with a white cap pulled down in his face at the location. She said that after seeing photographs of the suspect, she realised that the man was
The taxi driver was also a prime suspect in the disappearance of Police Lance Corporal Patriena Nicholson, who vanished on August 9, 2013, after leaving the Police Mounted Branch.
She would have celebrated her fortieth birthday on October 2 last.
Yesterday, her sister, Shellon Nicholson, said that Waldron’s death had brought her some measure of closure.
“Only those who have lost a loved one can understand…my sister’s case will never be solved. We wept for my sister and now his family will weep for him. You call that karma.”
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