Father of one killed by police during alleged shootout
Police in Orange Walk Town are under fire after an officer shot and killed 19-year-old Dyandre Alberto Chee on Saturday night. Residents there continue to demand justice, saying that police officers used excessive force. Police Commissioner Chester Williams agrees. Tonight, four police officers are in a jail cell pending an internal and criminal investigation. Vejea Alvarez reports.
Vejea Alvarez, Love News: Residents of Orange Walk Town came out in droves last night, to remember, celebrate, and demand justice for 19-year-old Dyandre Alberto Chee. Family members, friends, and ordinary citizens of the community held a candlelight vigil in hopes of shining a light on Chee’s death after he was shot and killed in what police are saying was a shootout. An official release from the Ministry of Home Affairs says, QUOTE “police officers attached to the Orange Walk Police Formation said that while they were patrolling the riverside area, they came across three motorcycles, each carrying a driver and pillion rider.” Notably, police initially said “they responded to shots being fired in the area” The release goes on to say that according to the officers, they attempted to stop the motorcycles; however, instead of stopping, they sped off with the police in pursuit. However, Yahari Villeda, one of motorcyclist who were along with Chee, says that there was never a shootout and only two motorcycles were involved. Villeda claims that both he and Chee, who police initially said was 27-years-old, were driving on River Street when they saw bright lights coming towards them at a high speed which led to them speeding up. Villeda told Love News that the pair then continued to speed away in fear of being ran over.
Yahari Villeda, Eyewitness: “They almost knocked me off of my cycle if I didn’t give it more gas. And then so when we reached close to this ending and we had to gear down and so when we gear down you just hear mufflers pop, you hear “pop pop” my one and his one. As you hear “pop pop” you just heard seconds later you hear “pop, pop, pop, pop, pop” six shots. So then I was like this is not the muffler. I know these mufflers and those are not the muffler. So we banged the curve and when I banged the curve my back tire kind of slipped and I hurried put down my foot and I pushed back my cycle and we continued going because they were not looking to slow down. They didn’t even have their sirens on.”
Vejea Alvarez, Love News: The officers allege that the motorcyclists fired shots at them during the pursuit. This, according to the officers, caused them to return fire, during which one of the individuals, identified as Dyandre Chee, was hit and fell to the ground. But, Villeda says that Chee, whose passenger was 17-year-old Miguel Rivero, never fired any shots and was unable to stop.
Yahari Villeda, Eyewitness: “I was behind and Alberto breaks, he was ahead, he had a bigger engine and he brakes and he let me pass and he told me “Go ! Go ! Let them deal with me.” He said when they reached Dinner House Alberto stopped because the mobile did come in front of the man. So Miggie said Alberto turned and he told Miggie “Bwai Miggie get off. Let them kill me not you.” So Miggie told him “No man, this is two of us.” the man told us. We are like that, we are close and then Miggie said that the same little while Alberto hit him and when Alberto hit him Miggie moved that is when they shot their second shot because they had already shot one shot and they missed them. That is when the man came closer and shot the man.”
Vejea Alvarez, Love News: The contradicting reports has since led to the Commissioner of Police Chester, Chester Williams, ordering a criminal and internal investigation into the incident. He has dispatched a senior team of investigators headed by Superintendent Gerald Jones to investigate this incident properly. So far, the team has canvassed the entire pursuit route, looking for expended shells and surveillance footage to ascertain or dispel the officers’ account of the incident. And, the involved have been detained pending the outcome of the investigation. However, for Chee’s family justice cannot come soon enough, his sister, Serian Chee, says the family is devastated and outraged because they believe the police fabricated their versions of the events and even brutalized Chee after shooting him.
Serian Chee, Sister of Dyandre Chee: “The police they literally started to chase my little brother from way from boundary road. And then now come say a lie that shots were fired at them when that was all lies because none of the youths had any kind of firearms on them, none. And if that is what they’re saying I guess they should find two different kind of shells which I know for a fact they can’t prove because no shots were fired at them, none at all. They just killed my little brother and apart from them killing him my little brother was already dead they kicked up my little brother knowing he was bleeding, he was on the ground he couldn’t do anything anymore. They kicked him. They still wanted to handcuff the man when he was already dead.”
Vejea Alvarez, Love News: Investigators have interviewed and recorded statements from several witnesses. However, Villeda says she is fearful of being questioned by the police. Villeda claims that after Chee was shot the cops detained his passenger, Miguel Rivero, and brutalized him while he was in custody for more than five hours.
Yahari Villeda, Eyewitness: “One of them we saw he was the trigger man and he was already on top of Miggie. So I told him “No man you can’t touch my boy, my boy is seventeen you can’t do anything to him until his mom comes.” and then he came and said “Who told you that ?” and he was looking to push me already. I told him “No man you can’t do that.” It’s a good thing my mom reached and my mom is a JP so my mom told them no you can’t touch these children.”
Vejea Alvarez, Love News: Chee’s family added that while his death has left many in mourning, the real victim is his one year old daughter. Chee’s sister described him as a loving, humble and hardworking man whose life was cut short.
Serian Chee, Sister of Dyandre Chee: “Everybody that knows Alberto knows that he is not a trouble maker. Alberto doesn’t even have a record at the police station. Alberto is not a person that will be out giving trouble, he doesn’t drink, he doesn’t smoke all he did was work, gave his all to Mayitos and they really killed my brother for no reason and all I am asking is for Chester to look into this very seriously. They left my niece without a father. What are we to tell her now ? Who will look after her ? They won’t help us in anything. Instead of police trying to protect us the police are just killing people out here.”
Vejea Alvarez, Love News: The police will be compiling the evidence they retrieved and will be compiling a Criminal Investigation file which will be forwarded to the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions for review and necessary direction. Vejea Alvarez, Love News.