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Missing Elderly Man Found Dead in Rural Belize

The body of missing Jeoffrey Crawford, his stolen SUV and the main suspect for the murder are all in police custody tonight after the victim was taken from his home yesterday morning. Reporter Vejea Alvarez has been following the story in the villages of Crooked Tree and Biscayne; here is his report.

Vejea Alvarez, Love News: Jefrey Crawford was badly beaten and taken from his home near the entrance of Crooked Tree Village on the Philip Goldson Highway. His granddaughter, 27 year old Pauline Reneau, says she believes his neighbors had to do with his death because the story they gave her and the police isn’t adding up. 

Pauline Reneau, Granddaughter: “I was at work like about seven thirty I got a call and the story is not adding up we all know that. They called me and they told me that they saw two guys carrying my grandfather down his stairs to his vehicle and the neighbors said that they saw him bleeding in the forehead in the back of the vehicle but I’m not quite sure how they could see that when his car, his Nissan Pathfinder, is tinted. After that they called me again and they told me that ‘Oh someone may have kidnapped him and his vehicle.’ I said what ? They went with his vehicle as well ?”

Vejea Alvarez, Love News:  Reneau says that her grandfather’s neighbor began to change their story and even sent them on a wild goose chase.

Pauline Reneau, Granddaughter: “Well indeed it has to be someone that knows him. My grandfather is a very funny guy. He doesn’t allow anyone in his yard and more than likely you can’t even go up the stairs so if you’re his neighbor and he sees you coming he’ll be like ‘Pauling go and see what that one wants, I don’t want them in my yard.’ so I would already be coming down the step to meet you to see what you want. He is that kind of person there. And apparently from what I gathered the information is not adding up because one of the neighbor’s relatives told me that he saw my grandfather get up the morning went down the stairs with my weedwhacker to chop the yard and apparently that’s when his nephew and three other guys kinda approached him from behind and I guess attacked him, beat him and put him in the vehicle and took him somewhere. So after getting that news I decided that I’ll go and look for him this morning. So I got up six o’clock and I got a friend of mine to take me to look for him because I couldn’t sleep last night, I needed closure. I got information, I communicated with police as much a I could, I went on scene where they killed him. I went personally to the neighbors and they gave me a totally different information from what they gave me yesterday so I knew that something was wrong. I tried to talk to them and they kept looking at each other like ‘Don’t say anything.’ so I already caught that but I played it off like I didn’t see it.”

Vejea Alvarez, Love News:  Reneau who once lived with Crawford says she decided to confront his neighbors and that’s when one of the suspects relatives confessed that he heard the men planning to pounce on Crawford the night before the incident. 

Pauline Reneau, Granddaughter: “I said let me talk to the neighbors again, every time I come they give me a totally different information I guess one of the relatives there kinda got upset and he started telling me everything and said that there was an off-road like five minutes drive from where my grandfather lived on the same hand side. I said I passed there three times but we couldn’t get in because the road is bad and the vehicle is low but I’ll go and check again. The third time we went there we met police and I said okay they know something that – I mean the information is getting out. But all those information that I got on where to locate him was from the relative there so they knew and one of them had already confessed that his nephew that is in custody right now has something to do with it because it was planned Tuesday night. He said when he came from work Tuesday night he noticed that his nephew and a bunch of guys were in the yard but he didn’t pay it any mind he thought that they came to fix cycles because that’s what they normally do and he said he left the morning and when he left the morning that’s when he saw my grandpa about to chop the yard with the weed whacker and after that I called him like seven thirty and that’s when he got the news and it could have only been them because he knew that his nephew did not like my grandfather because he couldn’t do his mischief around him.”

Vejea Alvarez, Love News:  Reneau describes her grandfather as a humble man who kept to himself and she says she can’t understand why he was killed.

Pauline Reneau, Granddaughter: “He was a very jovial person, humble, liked to dress up, loved to sing, he loved music. I don’t see why anyone would like to hurt him and like I said anyone that knows him will tell you that he’s the pimp, he always feels like he’s young. Whenever he steps out all his fingers are filed with rings, bracelets, chains, always washing the vehicle dressed up, bragging about his tennis that’s just him. He sings, no one can sing better than him. Soca no one can dance better than him and like I said he loved kids so he’s always here with his great grandchildren and singing to us.”

Vejea Alvarez, Love News:  Crawford leaves behind a number of children and his common law wife.

With full cooperation from witnesses, family members, and neighbours, investigators have been making quick progress in solving the case. Love News spoke with Police Commissioner Chester Williams for an update on the investigation.

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police: “The police found the vehicle in a feeder road somewhere around the Biscayne area and right near where the vehicle was found the police observed a portion of the soil being disturbed. And so they dug that area and the body of Mr.Crawford was discovered in a shallow grave. He exhibited signs of violence particularly chop wounds. We have one of the suspects in custody at this time and we’re looking for another. The investigation of this one is going pretty well and we have gathered a number of evidence, a number of statements that is helping us to be able to bring closure to this one.”