Policeman brutally murdered
By Shirley Thomas
Guyana Chronicle
January 4, 2003

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Less than 24 hours after the brutal slaying of a policeman at a city restaurant, another cop was on Thursday night gunned down in execution style a short distance away from his Bent Street, Wortmanville home.

Dead is Constable Rayon Anthony Roberts of MM Bent Street, Wortmanville, aged 32 and a father of six, including a two-month old baby. Relatives confirmed that the cop was slain on the second birth anniversary of a two-year-old son.

Roberts was reportedly sitting on a bench outside a Tuc Shop at NN Bent Streets when, around 22:30 hours, three gunmen coming from an easterly direction walked up to the shop and opened a hail of gunfire on the cop seated on a bench at the entrance, then walked away.

Three of the bullets were said to have lodged in his head: one which entered from the lower temple and lodged in the forehead; one through the back of his head which also lodged in the forehead, and a third entered through the forehead as well.

Police who recovered five (5) .32 spent shells from the scene following the tragedy, yesterday confirmed that the victim sustained seven gunshot wounds.

Reports said that as the shots rang out into the night, persons on the scene dived for covers, but many other residents, including Roberts' family who were in their homes felt that the sounds were those of firecrackers.

But as word quickly spread around the policeman's wife and other relatives rushed to the scene where he lay in a crouching position, bleeding on the ground.

Relatives with Nursing and First Aid skills, tried to find a pulse, but there was none.

A call was immediately made to 911 but there was no response, and so Impact base was contacted, and within five minutes arrived on the scene. They rushed their shot colleague to the hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival.

According to the police, the three gunmen are known. A 'wanted bulletin' was recently issued for one of them for a series of murders and armed robberies. Two others were said to have been recently released from prison - one of whom may have been known by the policeman.

Roberts, a rank attached to the Tactical Services Unit, had been a member of the force for the last 13 years.

The bereaved relatives recalled that on his return from work on Thursday afternoon, the cop was met in the yard by one of his sons -Randy who had turned two on the same day.

The father lifted and hugged his son, wished him a happy birthday once more, and mused: "You sharing your ice-cream with daddy?" The child was said to have smiled and immediately began feeding his father the ice cream, and the two went inside.

At the time of his father's death on Thursday night, Randy was still up, waiting for his dad to come home.

Roberts leaves to mourn his wife Sharon and six children, mother - Elizabeth Wharton of Canada, father "Gabbie" and other relatives.

Meanwhile, Minister of Home Affairs, Ronald Gajraj and Commissioner of Police (Acting) Floyd Mc Donald and ranks of the Guyana Police Force expressed sincere condolences to the relatives and friends of the late constable Rayon Roberts on his passing.

In a statement, the Police Force reiterated its condemnation of the deadly violence perpetrated on its members, adding that all necessary measures will be implemented to ensure that these heinous criminal acts do not continue unabated.

Roberts execution came just hours before the burial of another policeman - Colin Robertson of Criminal Investigation Department (CID) Patrol who was shot and killed by bandits in a pre-dawn shooting as he was coming out of his house at Sophia, Greater Georgetown.

Roberts was also killed just 24 hours after another member of the Police Criminal Investigation Department, Constable Mark Latour was cold bloodedly gunned down as he entered the Arapaima Restaurant, main Street, on New Year's Night.

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