Shot vendor denies stabbing constable
Says gun fired when he decided to give up

By Andrew Richards
Stabroek News
October 30, 2000

Shot vendor Shawn Bobb has denied involvement in the stabbing of a city constable during unrest on Regent Street last week and says he was shot on Friday by a constabulary officer after he had decided to give himself up.

Stabroek News visited the hospital yesterday to find Bobb heavily bandaged and unable to move but he was well enough to speak.

Bobb, 32, of 360 Trench Road, East Ruimveldt, said he and a friend used a taxi to take them to Regent and Wellington Streets last Friday.

According to Bobb, he was going to assist his friend to set up his food stall on Wellington Street.

He said when he embarked from the vehicle members of the city constabulary swooped upon them and he ran into a condemned structure located on that corner.

Shots were fired at him but missed, the vendor said, and he heard a senior rank commanding the others to get him.

Bobb said he was afraid to come out of hiding because the ranks were heavily armed and he did not know what their intentions were.

Eventually, he decided to give himself up but when he came out he was met with the full blast of a shotgun's bullet in the stomach. The police say that Bobb attacked constables with a cutlass and was then shot.

He recalled a second shot being fired from a pistol which hit him in the arm, breaking it. Another pistol shot shattered his shin bone.

Before losing consciousness, Bobb remembered being beaten about the head and body with a baton. He was also kicked and cuffed, he stated.

The vendor showed this newspaper abrasions about his body and a deep gash in the head which required stitches.

Bobb has been a vendor for the past sixteen years. He started out on Water Street then moved to the vendors arcade and finally settled opposite Beepat's Store on Regent Street.

The father of two denied stabbing constable Taylor. He pointed out that the stabbing took place at the corner of Camp and Charlotte streets and said that he was guarding goods that vendors had left at the Camp and Regent streets corner.

A press release from the Mayor and City Council had said the constables had pursued the car Bobb was in because they recognised it as one used to commit offences on Regent Street last week.

The release said Bobb came out of the car and was pursued into the dilapidated structure. The release said that warning shots were fired after Bobb attacked the constables with a cutlass. Bobb denies this.

According to the City Council, Bobb ignored the warning and was subsequently shot. The Council also claimed that the vendor was in possession of a pistol.

Clashes between vendors and members of the city constabulary began after the discharge of an injunction which had prevented the City Council from removing the vendors from the Regent Street pavement.

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