What do the names Axel Williams, Marlon Letlow, Ryan Vaux, Neil Bovell and Warren Anthony Blue have in common?
They are all ex-policemen who wound up dead after ending up on the wrong side of the law.
Reports about policemen and their former colleagues becoming hard-core criminals escalated between 2002 and 2008, when the nation was hit by an unprecedented wave of violent crime, including armed robberies, kidnappings, execution-style killings and the brazen gunning of lawmen.
It was then that reports surfaced of former policemen aligning themselves with killing squads and drug gangs.
One of the first of these ex-cops to be identified as a ‘hit man’ was Axel Williams. On August 8, 2002, Williams visited Rasvill food vendor Rodwell Ogle, and made a purchase.
According to reports, Williams came up $20 short and refused to pay. A quarrel ensued and Williams punched Ogle in his face. It is alleged that when the vendor returned the blow, Williams fell to his knees.
Embarrassed, Williams reportedly ran to his car, returned with a handgun and shot Ogle three times. Ogle succumbed in the Georgetown Hospital’s High Dependency Unit.
Williams was reportedly detained briefly, but released on orders from a senior rank.
The police reportedly sought advice from the Chambers of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) and it was recommended that Axel Williams be charged with murder.
However, that recommendation was changed and an inquest was ordered into Ogle’s death.
It was later learnt that, even after the inquest was ordered, the then Commissioner of Police Floyd Mc Donald had authorized that Axel Williams’s .32 pistol be upgraded to a 9mm pistol.
Then Home Affairs Minister Ronald Gajraj would later acknowledge that he knew Axel Williams.
Axel Williams was gunned down on December 10, 2003, while driving in Bel Air.
Rapist and Serial Murderer
For close to three years, women who resided in Stanleytown, West Bank Demerara, between October 2003 and December 2006, lived in fear of a rapist and killer.
He was a former policeman and his name was Neil Bovell, and before he was eventually slain, he had butchered two women and burnt an elderly man in a house. He had also abducted and raped at least three other females.
Bovell’s name became linked to crime on December 22, 1992, when the then 25-year-old stabbed his reputed wife 19-year-old Shondell O’Brien, several times with a kitchen knife.
He was captured a few days later at Bartica. But although charged, he was never convicted, since no eyewitness ever testified to seeing the attack.
On September 6, 2003, Bovell got into an argument with 31-year-old Philippa Harrison, his second reputed wife.
Later that evening he ambushed her in an alley in East Ruimveldt and stabbed her to death. He then escaped in a car.
Police recovered the suspect’s white station wagon, with a bloody knife blade inside, in front of the Stanleytown home of Bovell’s father.
On October 4, 2003, Bovell sneaked into the Lot 139 Stanleytown home of 64-year-old mechanic Vernon Bernard. He killed the elderly man and then waited for Bernard’s daughter, Velda, to arrive home. When she came just before midnight, Bovell held her at knifepoint and tied her up. He then placed the dead man’s body in the two-bedroom house, doused it with kerosene and set it alight. The killer then hoisted the diminutive woman bodily and took her into the dense Canal Number Two backlands.
After two days in the mosquito-infested backlands, Bernard managed to untie herself from a tree and flee while Bovell slept.
The raids by police appeared to incense Bovell. He vented his rage on villagers, sneaking out at night to abduct and rape young women.
One of the victims was a 32-year-old West Coast Demerara woman. She was grabbed at gunpoint from her boyfriend’s house on Thursday, August 14, 2003. The outlaw held her hostage for hours before she managed to escape.
Eventually, on December 27, 2006, police ranks, acting on a tip, visited the Lot 137 Stanleytown home of Bovell’s father.
They found Bovell preparing a meal in the backyard and shot him dead as he attempted to flee.
COPS TURNED ROBBERS
In October, 2012, the bullet-riddled corpses of Constables Marlon Letlow and Leadon Aaron were found at Paramakatoi, North Pakaraimas. Aaron’s body was found a short distance from a crashed All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV) that the constables had left the police station with.
His .38 service revolver was missing.
Letlow’s remains were found in a clump of bushes several hours later with his weapon, and a magazine with eight live rounds, close by.
It is believed that the two policemen were victims of retaliation from miners whose camp they had attempted to rob.
According to reports, Aaron was riding the ATV when individuals they had tried to rob confronted them.
Constable Marlon Letlow was reinstated into the Police Force, on August 06, 2012, after being interdicted from duty and charged, following investigations into the robbery and murder of two gold miners at Bartica on September 05, 2010.
A MURDERED TEACHER, A MISSING POLICEWOMAN
Burly, soft-spoken, and driving a battered yellow cab, Royston Waldron sure had many of his neighbours in Kitty fooled. Beneath that quiet façade lay a cunning, criminal mind and a smoldering rage that caused him to target women…at least, that’s the profile that some investigators had put together of Waldron before two bullets ended his life
Royston Waldron joined the Guyana Police Force, but was eventually dismissed.
He drove a battered yellow hire car and could be seen with other drivers parked near High Street. It is believed that his specialty was armed robberies, and that he may have used his police connections to stay ahead of the law. But in June 2008, Waldron was arrested, charged and remanded for harbouring two key members of the Rondell ‘Fine man’ Rawlins gang. He was also charged for armed robbery.
Prior to his arrest, Waldron had started a common-law relationship with Patriena Nicholson, a lance corporal in the Guyana Police Force.
On Friday August 9, 2013, Lance Corporal Patriena Nicholson left her post at the Police Mounted Branch. She was never seen again.
Shellon Nicholson says that police arrested Waldron, but were forced to release him after 72 hours. He was never rearrested.
On July 6, 2014, Waldron reportedly dropped 34-year-old Nyozi Goodman, a teacher at the prestigious St. Stanislaus College, to the National Gymnasium, Mandela Avenue.
In late July, the skeletal remains of a woman were found in a bushy lot at Pattensen, on the East Coast of Demerara. DNA testing eventually confirmed that the victim was Goodman.
The prime suspect was Waldron, who was living at Lot 48, Public Road Kitty. Meanwhile, it is believed that Waldron and some of his acquaintances continued their criminal activities.
From information detectives received, Waldron and two other men robbed a businessman at gunpoint in Georgetown on October 11, 2014. It is believed that on October 22, last, Waldron and his gang also robbed a woman at gunpoint in Avenue of the Republic, shortly after the victim had left a commercial bank.
On November 14, 2014, police intercepted Waldron in a car at Alexander and Thomas Streets, Kitty. With him were two men who were wanted for questioning in connection with a number of armed robberies.
Police allege that “gunfire was opened” at the ranks, who returned fire, hitting Waldron. He was taken to the GPHC where he succumbed while receiving medical treatment. The two other men were detained.
THE SAGA OF ANTHONY BLUE
On September 11, 2012, Shaquille Grant, 17, was fatally shot by police ranks at Agricola, East Bank Demerara.
Grant, of Lot 72 ‘BB’ Eccles, East Bank Demerara, sustained bullet wounds to the head, chest and buttocks.
Among the ranks who shot Grant were Lance Corporal Warren Blue and Special Constable Jamal Lewis.
Lewis was charged, but eventually freed. Blue went into hiding and emerged as a bandit.
In December, 2014, ex-policeman Blue, and University of Guyana graduate Mahendra Sukull, shot and robbed Montrose, East Coast Demerara proprietor, Latchmie Baburam, 52, of an undisclosed amount of cash.
Mrs. Baburam survived. Her attackers didn’t.
Police ranks who arrived on the scene shot and killed Sukull in the supermarket. Blue was shot dead while fleeing the scene.
In May, 2016 Ryan Vaux, called “Gaza”, 36, a former member of the Tactical Services Unit of the Guyana Police Force, was shot dead by the police.
He had allegedly pointed a gun at ranks and tried to escape after he was arrested for an alleged robbery committed on a Cummings Lodge resident.
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