This weekend western Belize saw a series of fatal shootings. The latest occurred in Camalote Village on Sunday night. Akeem Thimbrel and Shawn Lopez, residents of Camalote Village were gunned down under a tree sometime before seven that night as Thimbrel was helping Lopez get home since he was intoxicated. Unfortunately, after both men died, it was found out that Thimbrel was at the wrong place at the wrong time. Love News visited the scene and spoke to the Akeem’s father Ervin Thimbrel.
FATHER OF DECEASED ERVIN THIMBRIEL
“I was at home, I wasn’t feeling well so I didn’t go to church the night and I heard the shots around 7pm so I came out on the porch to see what the commotion was. I heard about five or six shots and I wasn’t sure if was gunshots so I came out and I asked. At the same time the common law wife of the other person who died was passing so I asked her if those were gunshots and she said yes. I stood here for a while and then I got back inside and then about a couple minutes later I saw a lot of persons running down then I realized that something had happened. I came out again and then my youngest uncle came and he told me that they shot up my son and Shan. When I started hearing that members of the security forces suspected this that’s really what hurt the most and I’m hoping that that is wrong. The people of Camalote from what they saw, a lot of people saw a lot of things.”
A number of stories have been circulating the village about what led to the shooting but the one that stands out is that of the father, who believes that the police may have been involved.
“It seems as if though it started from a jealousy thing with an underaged girl. People came and they saw the vehicle turn right into that lane and stopped there for a while and then seemingly they were dodging these guys but the intended person was one of my other cousins because he had something to do with this young lady. So when my son was there they probably mistook my son, that is what the guy said after he shot my son, my son didn’t die, it was a vicious attack that happened, my son got so many shots it was incredible that he even survived, he lived for about an hour and a half after the incident and they took him to the hospital. The person who came and saw the whole thing she said that when she went to the vehicle she said the guys had on the camouflage for the police force and they were in a vehicle marked as an F150.”
Love News spoke to an eyewitness who was with the two men just minutes before the fatal incident. He alleges that these men were regular visitors of his home.
EYE WITNESS BELHEM GUZMAN
“All those guys were just chilling out and Shawn Lopez told me that he would buy me a flash and bring a coke for me and they brought it and everything was cool. We stood right there but when I took the flask I drank it nearly to my head and I told Shawn that I would go to relax. I felt good so I went home into my house and I went and closed the door and as I closed the door three minutes after that this happened. The girl came from over there and asked me what happened. This is our chill spot, this is where they come everyday under the mango tree and we relax and those guys I don’t know if they do any drugs but they drink and I drink too so they always come to hail me.”
With the accusation of the law enforcement being involved, Love news spoke to Superintendent Howell Gillett Officer in Command at Belmopan.
“We have a known suspect that we are looking for, he is from another district particularly Belize City and we are collaborating with our police officers there to assist us in capturing this person and that I believe will shed more light to the investigation. That is not the case. I have been intimate with this investigation and I have been interviewing people including I believe the same neighbor that you were talking about and having done that I realize that that is not the case that anybody came out the vehicle and that it was a police officer, that is still unclear but it is not our belief that a police officer is involved. It doesn’t matter the investigation will guide us and tell us who the perpetrator or perpetrators are and whomever it is will be dealt with. It seems that there was a relationship issue and there was somebody who was sent there to hurt the other party and that is what led to these double murders. For me to get to details I would be sharing the case on the media and I wouldn’t want to do that because this case hasn’t been taken to the court as yet.”
Police have two men detained for questioning.