The Guyana Police Force has requested help from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to probe the January 27 shooting of School of the Nations Principal, Brian O’Toole.
The US-based investigators are reportedly being asked to locate a Florida-based former student who is deemed as one of the persons of interest in the case.
At a joint press conference yesterday with Commissioner Leslie James, O’Toole, who is still unable to use his left arm, alleged that the former student had posted pictures of himself on social media in which he posed with a Glock handgun and ‘chemicals’, and issued threats to “blow up” the school. O’Toole said that he was shot four hours later.
He described the ex-student as an individual whose name “has been in the press many times.”
The ex-student is also believed to have made an audio in which he is heard “laughing and gloating” about the incident.
“I have given it to the American Embassy – that is gloating about the killing, that when he shot the man, he did the dance, then he said ‘how wicked is that,’ then he laughed,” O’Toole told a press conference he shared with the Police Commissioner.
He said that “the same individual” who is known to hundreds of people, also posted on social media to say ‘protect me, give me immunity and I will give you the facts.’”
“We reported it to the police here; they immediately contacted people at the American Embassy; we have written to the US Ambassador…the FBI is investigating the matter…”
O’Toole would only say that the student left the school “many years ago.”
But he also expressed frustration at the slow pace of the US to the information he and the police have provided.
“One of my hopes after this is that the American embassy will appreciate the responsibility.
“I wonder if that threat had been made against the American School here or to an American school anywhere in the world, if they would wait 14 weeks before the embassy, the FBI would say this is what they have done. There is no doubt that for our part that has been a source of tremendous frustration.”
Commissioner of Police Leslie James disclosed that the police are in possession of an audio that appears to be linked to the attack.
“Dr O’Toole provided us with a recording. That, of course, will have to be analyzed,” James said.
The Top Cop described the audio as “a significant piece of evidence” which the police only received on Monday.
The recording was reportedly made two weeks ago.
According to O’Toole, “the person who gave it to us begged us not to use it because (the person) is frightened…”
He said that the individual indicated that the audio was “a crucial piece of evidence. We took it to the police and to the US Embassy.”
Commissioner James also revealed that there were three “persons of interest” in the investigation.
He said that one of them has left the country and the other is overseas.
O’Toole and Commissioner James were repeatedly asked about the identity of the individual who shot the principal at his home.
According to James, documents seen by investigators indicated that the individual whom O’Toole had initially believed to be the shooter had travelled out of Guyana on December 15, 2018.
Recounting the night he was shot, O’Toole said that, as a security measure after the threats, his home was “lit up.”
He said that a young man jumped out at him about five feet from his door.
“His hands were trembling and he looked more frightened than I was.
“The first shot I thought was a blank, and I thought this is a serious prank, the second shot I saw blood, and after the third shot he did a dance.”
It was only two days later that a student showed him a video of the online video game, ‘Fortnite’.
He said that the dance was similar to the dance that the shooter had done.
Dr. O’Toole said that police investigators subsequently showed him the photograph of an individual who resembled the shooter.
The principal said that when he was shown the photograph “my whole body reacted…Every atom in my body responded.”
“The one thing that I believe is definite is that this is related to the Fortnite dance. I believe that a group of students has become immersed in that game…
“It is one of the most pernicious and dangerous games that has been produced and they talk about killing people.”
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