Father, son-in-law shot dead as gunmen invade Linden home
…“we hope that we will get a breakthrough soon” – Minister
…as 2 suspects arrested
The community of Wismar, Linden, Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice), was shaken in the early hours of Saturday, as three masked gunmen burst into the home of Johnson Bowen, 87, and Manuel Dos Santos, 58, and brutally murdered them.
Guyana Times was informed that the family was sleeping soundly when the brazen home invaders broke in, armed to the teeth with guns and clad in black masks. The robbers showed no mercy as they unleashed a wave of violence that left the two men dead and one injured.
The home invasion was a terrifying and brutal affair, with the intruders resorting to violence almost immediately. Dos Santos’s wife told detectives that she was awoken by the sound of the intruders in the living room and was confronted with a terrifying scene.
She said she saw her elderly father being tugged by the invaders, while one of her sons lay helpless on the floor. The attackers were ruthless and showed no hesitation in using force to achieve their objectives.
But even in the face of such a horrific situation, the family members fought back valiantly, with their bare hands and cutlasses they used as weapons.
It was reported that Denzil Roberts, the nephew of Dos Santos, who lives next door, rushed to the scene to help his family members after hearing a commotion coming from the house. Despite the odds, he managed to choke one of the attackers, while Manuel and Valdeir Dos Santos – Manuel’s son – armed themselves with cutlasses and fought off the others. The suspects were chopped in the process.
The situation quickly devolved into a chaotic bloodbath as the invaders fired indiscriminately at the roof, causing panic and chaos to ensue. Guyana Times was informed that the attackers had no regard for the lives of those inside the home, firing recklessly and causing damage to the property.
The brave family members fought back with all their might, but in the end, two of them paid the ultimate price. Manuel and Bowen were shot dead, their bodies riddled with bullets.
Their valiant efforts to protect their loved ones and their home were not enough to save them from the ruthless invaders. Roberts sustained severe injuries and was rushed to the Georgetown Public Hospital for immediate surgery.
The community is still in shock following the senseless violence, and residents have taken to social media to express their struggles to come to terms with the tragedy and the reality that such an act of violence can occur in their quiet neighbourhood.
The Police are investigating the incident, and while it is suspected to have been a robbery gone wrong, the motivation of the attackers remains unclear.
According to the Commander of the Division, Kurleigh Simon, there have been some developments in the investigation. Two persons are now in custody, and the Police are optimistic that they will be able to shed light on the motive behind the attack and the identities of the other suspects.
“We are hoping that we can speedily resolve the situation and bring the perpetrators to justice. I cannot give too much details at the moment, but what I can tell you is that we are conducting investigations,” he told reporters.
The murders in Wismar, Linden, have also attracted the attention of the highest levels of Government, with Home Affairs Minister Robeson Benn visiting the scene of the crime to express his disgust at the senseless violence that has claimed the lives of two innocent men.
Speaking to reporters, the Minister said that he could not understand the motive behind the attack, especially since the area in which the family lives is where the most vulnerable members of society live. He called on the Police to leave no stone unturned in their investigation and to bring the perpetrators to justice.
“I want to condemn this action in the strongest possible term and to call on all people to join up to help us solve this crime. Two persons are in custody and are going to be interrogated… they are still working on issue with the blood trail and the collection of other evidence… we hope that we will get a breakthrough soon within a matter of days,” the Minister said.
The arrests have brought some relief to the community, which has been reeling from the tragedy. Still, the investigation is ongoing, and the Police have urged anyone with information to come forward and assist with the inquiry. (G9)