East Ruimveldt man dies from single shot
Gunman came with posse
By Samantha Alleyne
Stabroek News
January 13, 2003

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A forty-year-old man was early yesterday morning gunned down in front of his sixteen-year-old daughter and other relatives by a man with whom one of his relatives had a misunderstanding.

Keith Hopkinson, of 52 East Ruimveldt, was pronounced dead at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation. The man died as a result of a single gunshot wound to his groin.

The man's nephew, Travis Ridley, who was one of the many relatives who witnessed the murder, said that his uncle was at the time repairing a pair of shoes when he was shot.

Ridley said that earlier in the morning a seventeen-year-old family friend of his who was spending some time at his home and his uncle's assailant had a misunderstanding.

He said that they had an argument on the road which later resulted in a scuffle and his friend reportedly lashed the man in his head. The man left vowing to return with a gun.

According to the young man, he and his uncle and some other relatives were outside of their home when two cars, a burgundy and a dark blue, pulled up in front of their home around fifteen minutes after the man's departure.

"About twelve people come out the car, two woman and ten man and deh come to we gate," the man said.

He said that the man with whom his friend had the misunderstanding was in the group along with his mother and sister.

He said his uncle went to the gate and enquired about their presence in front of the yard and they reported that they wanted to speak to Ridley.

The young man said he told them that he had nothing to say to them and did not budge from his seat.

The assailant then informed them that his friend, who was at the time in the house, owed him $13,000 and threatened that should he not get his money "people go dead today."

Ridley said that their gate had a padlock on it and the assailant's mother broke it with a stick.

"The boy den come in the yard and me and he had a lil talking and then me uncle put he out deh yard," Ridley said.

According to him when the man returned to his group one of the men handed him a gun and he again rushed into the yard this time placing the gun to his head.

"He pull the trigger two time but deh gun didn't go off," the still shaken young man recalled.

He said that the man then went over to his uncle, who by that time had gone back to his job of repairing a pair of shoes, and shot him in his groin.

Hopkinson reportedly ran to the back of the house where he collapsed and according to Ridley the man fired another shot which miraculously passed through the end of his three quarter jeans and flew into a nearby yard.

After firing the two shots, the man exited the yard and he and his group disappeared in their cars. Hopkinson was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Ridley said his entire family was shocked by the incident as they never expected the man to shoot anyone.

"The man daughter stand up right at the window and watch she father get shoot dead," Ridley said.

Yesterday, a number of relatives and friends were consoling the man's family. Hopkinson was said to be a former member of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF). The police are investigating the shooting.

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