Gunmen kill West Coast businessman
June 28, 2002
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About five men dressed in dark-coloured clothing shot at Baksh's home, after which they walked towards the `backdam' and escaped, residents in the area said. Police are questioning five persons from the West Demerara area in their investigations.
Baksh, who operated a butcher shop and grocery store at his residence at 128 Met-en-Meerzorg (West) and was a member of the Met-en-Meerzorg Policing Group, sustained gunshot wounds to his head. No one else was wounded in the attack which lasted about half-an-hour.
His wife Bibi, 50, said she did not believe robbery was the motive as the attackers did not demand cash or valuables.
A relative first saw his body, lying near a few bags of `bran' stored under the house, where it is believed the gunman who shot him was hiding.
Baksh was the father of Wazim, 24, and Wahab, 25, and Shabanna, 18.
Bibi said she was at home with Shabanna, Wazim, nephew Paul Narine, 32, and relative Mikey Ali, 42.
Bibi recalled that everyone at the home was in bed when the bandits struck at around 23:30 hrs.
She said her husband had gotten up and gone downstairs to use the washroom when she heard gunshots from the southern side of the house, followed by a heavy pounding at the back window.
Several louvre window panes were shattered and some of the wooden bars on the inside were ripped out by the men with a piece of 4"x 4" post in an attempt to gain entry into the house.
Bibi said her nephew and brother, who were in the back bedroom from where the gunmen tried to enter, ran out to escape the bullets which penetrated the wall.
"They run to my room and I tell them to go under the bed in the other room. We were so scared and didn't know what to do because my husband was downstairs. However he came up back".
She said that after her husband sneaked back into the house, he quietly peeped out through a window after the shooting stopped for a while.
After realising the place was quiet, Bibi said he went back down to see what had happened. It was during that time that he was shot and killed by one of the men who was apparently hiding in the yard.
As residents nearby were alerted by the sound of gunfire, they made contact with the Leonora Police who responded by saying that they were on the way to the scene.
However, the first party of policemen from the Target Special Squad ("Black Clothes") arrived at the scene about half-an-hour after. The regular Police came about one-and-a-half-hour later, the weeping woman said.
She explained that after residents alerted the Police, they subsequently began calling one another by telephone, relating the incident. As the sound of telephones, ringing continuously, raised further alarm, the gunmen stopped shooting for about 12 minutes.
But they again started firing several shots around the neighbourhood in an attempt to scare away anyone who would have gone to the rescue of the family.
Bibi said that when the shooting finally stopped, a patrol of "Black Clothes" Policemen shortly after passed through the area in a van and her son hailed out to them, notifying them that the shooting had occurred at their residence.
She said she went to open the gate for the Policemen to enter into the yard. "I see me son crying, and it was then I know that something gone wrong".
Bibi said she summoned the courage to step forward and saw her husband's body lying on the ground.
After the Police made their inquiries, Baksh's body was removed from the residence at around 04:00 hrs. and taken to a Georgetown funeral home.
The shooting was just two weeks after bandits robbed and brutally murdered East Bank Essequibo businesswoman, Claudette Ng-See Quan, 60, and critically wounded her husband Hilton.
A gang of about 15 bandits gained entry to their Vergenoegen premises by way of the Atlantic Ocean and escaped with more than $400,000 in cash, along with a 12-guage shotgun, one 9mm and one .32 pistol. - (JAIME HALL)