– baby son clings to life with five gunshot wounds
Firing semi-automatic pistols through a bedroom window, gunmen pumped 12 bullets into career criminal Travis Rudder, and a few more rounds into his wife and baby son, as they slept in their bedroom.
By the time the gunmen’s clips were empty, 26-year-old Rudder lay sprawled and lifeless on his bed; his 18-month old son, Travis Rudder (Jnr), badly wounded, with some five gunshots to the stomach and back, and Rudder’s reputed wife, Mawanza Gill, bleeding from gunshots to both legs.
The child remains in a critical condition following surgery at the Georgetown Public Hospital, where doctors also operated on his mother to extract bullets from her legs.
The brazen killing happened at around 01.40 hrs yesterday at Rudder’s one-flat home at Lot 130, Lindley Street, Nandy Park, East Bank Demerara, leaving police baffled as to the exact motive for Rudder’s execution.
But sources with knowledge of Rudder’s background believe that he was the latest victim of a prolonged war between rival gangs on the East Bank of Demerara. One recent casualty of that war is said to be an Agricola resident who was shot and robbed in McDoom in January, and later gunned down in a minibus three months later.
Rudder himself reportedly escaped execution a few weeks ago at the hands of some of his associates in La Penitence area.
It is believed that at least two gunmen carried out yesterday’s assault, firing through a bedroom window at the eastern side of the one-flat building.
Police recovered at least eighteen 9mm bullet casings from the scene. Residents who spoke with Kaieteur News recalled hearing heavy gunfire, but stated that they did not look outside. None of the residents recalled seeing anyone fleeing the scene.
The wounded Mawanza Gill said that the shooting happened at around 02.00 hrs and lasted about 20 minutes.
“I didn’t see anything. They just come to the window and start shooting me, my child-father and the baby.”
She declined to speculate about the fact that the gunmen appeared to know the exact bedroom that Rudder occupied. Gill said that Rudder “worked in the interior,” and that they have been together for about five years.
Rudder’s mother, Viola Marshall, and her five-year-old son were also in the house at the time, but were not targeted by her son’s killers.
A weeping Mrs. Marshall told Kaieteur News that she was awaked by the sound of several gunshots. She said that she ran to her son’s bedroom, where she saw his bullet-riddled body, and her grandson with wounds to his stomach, feet and back.
She said that an ambulance took the wounded toddler and his mother, who was shot in the leg, to the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC), while a hearse removed her son’s body.
Asked who would have wanted her son dead, Marshall said that her son had been receiving threats from a former friend, and that the threats began about a month ago.
Reliable sources with links to an Agricola gang have indicated that Rudder may have been targeted for reportedly snitching on two notorious gang members.
The two gang members were recently held by police with an unlicenced firearm and are currently incarcerated in the Camp Street Prison.
Rudder was accused of the March, 2007 murder of his 17-year-old ex-girlfriend Donnis King, who was shot in the stomach at her Bagotstown, East Bank Demerara home.
Rudder was arrested some six months after the killing, but was found not guilty in 2011. He was later in trouble again, having been caught with an illegal firearm and ammunition.
His death comes in the midst of a pattern of gun-related killings.
Just last Wednesday Rubis Guyana Inc. employee Jason Cort, was shot dead in his Lot 262 Jamoon Drive, Meadowbrook home. The killer reportedly fled with Cort’s jewellery and licenced firearm.
At least 77 people have now been slain for the year, with guns being used in at least 27 homicides. Of this number, 12 have been execution-style killings.
The Guyana Police Force has reported a steady rise in homicides. Sixty-six murders were recorded at the end of May 2015, in comparison to 59 murders at the end of May 2014.
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