Aug 05, 2017 News
– reportedly tried to escape, ignored repeated warnings to halt
A 24-year-old remand prisoner was shot dead at around 17.00 hrs yesterday, shortly after instigating a violent clash between himself and other inmates at the Timehri penitentiary.
Winston Hinds, called “Town Man,” of Blue Berry Hill, Wismar, was shot in the stomach by a prison officer. He was pronounced dead at the East Bank Demerara Regional Hospital.
Deputy Director of Prisons Gladwin Samuels told Kaieteur News that based on information he received, Hinds and another prison had started a ruckus between other inmates in one of the dormitories. They were then transferred to another dormitory, where they began to break up beds and assault other inmates. He said that some of the prisoners had to receive medical treatment.
Kaieteur News was told that shortly after, Hinds darted past a prison officer and “in a split second” fled into the compound. It was there that he was shot.
Samuels said that the rank who shot Hinds “is assisting the police with their investigations.”
A Department of Public Information (DPI) release stated that the murder accused had repeatedly ignored all warnings issued by prison officers.
According to the release, several prisoners, who were armed with improvised weapons, were involved in “a serious physical altercation.”
“Prison officers attempted to restore order by breaking up the violent fracas. During this process, Hinds fled into the prison yard in an attempted bid to escape. Clear and repeated efforts were issued for Hinds to desist, but he refused in every instance and continued running,” the release added.
“Prison officers were left with no option but to curtail his escape bid. This necessitated the use of live rounds as a last resort, after every option had failed.
“Hinds was struck by a single round and was taken to the East Bank Demerara Hospital Complex, where he was pronounced dead on arrival. “
The release stated that the slain prisoner’s next of kin was informed and the police are conducting an investigation.
“The Guyana Prison Service deeply regrets the loss of Mr. Hinds’ life and extends deepest condolences to his family, relatives and friends. The GPS will also reiterate its internal calls for all prisoners to conduct themselves responsibly, to resist any temptation to escape from lawful custody, to obey the instructions of prison officers at all times, and to serve their sentences as mandated by the courts, until such time as they are eligible for release.”
Hinds, previously charged with five counts of armed robbery, was remanded in January 2016, for the February 2015 killing of Richard Remington, 43, at Cholmondeley Hill, Wismar.
Remington’s decomposing remains were found in a clump of bushes along a track in the vicinity of Matthews Lane in the Christianburg/Cholmondeley Hill area on February 12, last year. He had been shot three times, including once to the head.
The fatal shooting was the continuation of several weeks of violence at the country’s prisons.
The unrest began with the July 9 destruction by fire of most of the Georgetown Prison, the killing of prison officer Odinga Wickham, the wounding of his colleague, Hubert Trim, and the escape of eight dangerous inmates.
This was followed by the escape of 13 prisoners from the Lusignan Prison.
Last Saturday, security ranks at Lusignan were forced to shoot several prisoners with pellets and rubber bullets after coming under attack.
Joint Services raids have unearthed several prohibited items at Lusignan, New Amsterdam and Timehri Prisons.
On Thursday, security personnel seized some 180 to 183 grammes of marijuana that was being smuggled into the prison in meals sent to an inmate.
A Prison Officer, with some 20 years’ service, was implicated in the find, and remains in custody.
Marijuana is said to be a highly valued commodity in the prisons, reportedly selling for as much as three times its street value.
Also, between 09:40 and 12:30hrs, ranks of the Joint Services found eight lighters, seven smoking utensils, 16 improvised weapons, eight packs of cigarettes, two dining forks, two pairs of scissors, five cell phone chargers, a bottle of pepper sauce, three cellular phones, a tattoo machine, a quantity of tobacco and 305 grammes of cannabis at the Timehri Prison.
Also on Thursday, security personnel thwarted attempts by a Cevons Waste Management employee, to smuggle over 860 grammes of cannabis and two cartons of cigarettes into the Lusignan Prison.
Some 24 grams of cannabis were also allegedly found in the pocket of one of the Cevons employees. He was sentenced to three years in jail yesterday.
That same day, police and prison ranks found several improvised weapons at the Lusignan holding area.
Between 10.30 hrs to 13.30 hrs yesterday, a snap prison search in two dorms, two landings cells at the New Amsterdam Prisons unearthed eight cellular phones, three cell phone batteries, three ear phones and a cell phone display, five cell phone chargers, 16 cigarette lighters, two tattoo machines, five improvised weapons, 20 packs of cigarettes and three grammes of cannabis.
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