Slippery criminal meets bloody end

Stabroek News
June 5, 2003

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The criminal career of wanted man Romel Reman came to a bloody end early yesterday morning during an anti-crime operation in Friendship, East Coast Demerara.

Reman, just 21 years old, was among Guyana’s most wanted bandits, after being implicated in some of the most shocking crimes during the past 15 months of lawlessness. But he had always managed to give police the slip until yesterday.

The police launched the hunt for Reman early last year, posting bulletins for him, Shawn Marco Gittens and Kwame Pindleton with whom the man reportedly associated.

Pindleton was killed in a shoot-out with the police at the head of the University of Guyana access road last year, while Gittens was shot dead in Buxton by gang members last month. All three men were suspected to have been hiding in the Buxton/ Friendship community.

When word that the trio was holed up in a house in Creen Street, Georgetown circulated on June 21, the police rushed to cordon off the area but left empty-handed. That house was subsequently set ablaze later in the year.

In another near miss, Reman was wounded by a gunshot when the police closed in on him in Subryanville last November. One man was shot dead in that incident, while Reman escaped through a burial ground.

The police said they had received a tip that the Fifth Street, Subryanville house was being used as a safe haven by Reman and other bandits, but when they moved in, they were greeted by gunfire.

After Reman escaped, the police found an AK-47 assault rifle with a magazine containing 38 live rounds and a `Tech’ .9 Submachine gun with 22 live rounds.

Then on April 10 of this year, Chief Magistrate (Ag) Juliet Holder-Allen issued arrest warrants for Reman; Shawn Brown, one of the Mash Day escapees, and deceased bandit Christopher Belle, who was recently killed in Buxton and left in a chair under an abandoned house.

Reman and his co-accused were charged with the January 22 murders of Leonard Parjohn, Carlton Norton and Sharon Reece during robberies of two Charlestown beer gardens. It was believed he and his colleagues were continuing to hide out in Buxton.

The security forces recently stepped up operations in the community after a young soldier was killed in a bid to rescue a kidnapped businessman. Ever since then, several wanted persons have been killed and security forces say the bandits’ grip on the village is weakening.

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