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Marigot police shooting: Eyewitnesses describe how it all happened

By SNO Staff
The bus stand where Rene and his friends were approached by police.

The bus stand where Rene and his friends were approached by police.

As tensions flare in Marigot, over the shooting death of a 38-year-old man by a police officer, several eyewitnesses have come forward to lash out at the police for the incident.

In the immediate aftermath of the shooting, one eyewitness named Mario told St. Lucia News Online (SNO) that the victim of Sunday’s shooting, Yves Rene, was innocent and didn’t deserve to die.

Recounting what took place, Mario said that a vehicle had pulled up alongside the gap at Marigot where he, Rene and several other men, were liming. The police stepped out of the vehicle stating that they were from the Drugs Unit conducting a random search.

“They asked all of the men at the bus stand, to put their hands against the banister,” Mario recalled.

However, everyone but the victim complied. Mario told SNO that Rene has had brushes with the law before, so he got scared and panicked. He began running and a young male police officer went after him.

Another eyewitness, Lloyd, who was also searched for drugs, told SNO that Rene ran towards the side of the “shanty,” and the police officer stooped down and aimed at his head and fired one single shot.

According to Lloyd, the police used a 12-inch shot gun which blasted Rene’s skull, killing him instantly. This sent him tumbling down the hill from the bus stand.

Asked whether he thinks that the officer may have done it intentionally, Lloyd said he believes it was.

“Yes. If you look at the angle, obviously at the side of the shanty is a slanted hill going down, so if the gentleman going, obviously its the head area you are going to get. He is a trained police officer,” he lamented.

The arrow points to the area where Rene landed after rolling down the hill.

The arrow points to the area where Rene landed after rolling down the hill.

Meanwhile, Mario told SNO that besides shooting the victim, the police did not take into consideration his surrounding, as he believes anyone could have been injured.

“They have kids all around this area walking. I don’t know what went into the police head to shoot the man, much less to shoot in the area where people usually pass all the time,” he added.

Mario said the team of police were mainly young men, who may not have had much experience.

“I don’t know why they could give these guys guns. You could give them a taser. When you look at the news in Martinique, US and all over, you don’t see policemen opening fire without assessing the area.”

James on the other hand claims that the police said that they found a firearm and a quantity of marijuana in the victim’s possession, but he is alleging that these items were planted on his deceased friend.

“He didn’t had shirt on him. Where will he store this gun? Its a public place. Do you expect him to have a gun? He was with us all the time,” James told SNO.

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The man’s brother, Gildus, described him as a calm and peaceful person.

“I just feel bad about it. If they wanted to shoot him that’s okay, but not in his head and not to kill him,” he said.

Other eyewitnesses claim that the officer-in-charge of the team held onto his head when he saw that Rene was shot, telling persons in the area that they were just there to conduct a random search.

Mario said that he wants to see justice served in the matter, because it could have been him or any one of his friends who may have lost their lives like Rene.

“All of us will help the family and bring it down to the law, because these things cant continue to happen in this country. You can’t go killing an innocent guy even though he run.”

He said he is confident that the media will highlight the “cruelty” and “power” that some policemen display.

“When you are on the side of the law, you feel strong but you have to be careful with that power,” he added.

Rene's brother Gildus.

Rene’s brother Gildus.

(14)(2)
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51 comments

  1. Why the hell he ran...if u innocent u would do as the police said... An how urll know he aim for his head..the guy was running away so maybe that's where the shot took him..u people don't know what urll want. Leave them for more life to be taken...maybe the office did the world a favor on that one...its my opinion...who vex them to fraid ...an urll want the police to catch the
    Criminals.. Smh

    (0)(10)
  2. First off both men have wrong in this situation, but I think police officers should be trained to shoot to disarm and not to kill.

    (2)(4)
  3. The police is part of the law. They gave an order. Why did he ran in the first place? Was he going to get a gun to come after the police?. Some St Lucians are so disrespectful and feel that they are above the law. They are the police for gawd sake! Why is he the police shot and not the others.
    People always saying police should aim here or there. They introduce themselves and say what they came to do. It is part of their duty. St. Lucians need to respect the police when they are carrying out their duties, once the police are not violating your rights.
    So many of the same thing we were hearing in the US months ago when police ask a suspect to stop and they don't. Police eventually had to pull their gun and shoot. Obey the law St Lucians.

    (8)(16)
    • PoliceOfficerWithMoralsAndProperTraining

      The police is there to uphold the law but they are not above the law. They have no right to be judge and jury. the role of a police officer is to arrest the criminal and let the justice system deal with him.

      (2)(0)
  4. kill'em all and done

    yay operation ORC is back, woop woop, yellow is the new red........

    (1)(3)
  5. ok so the rule is from time you run from the police they could kill you because according to their training, is something you going to go get to come back for them for coming and search the block. ok kinda make sense the officer was targeted by an unarmed fleeing man so he took out his shotgun and blast his brains out. he was protecting hisself in a dangerous situation. opened fire in a public place on an unarmed man. thats how we train cuz the situation was very dangerous. i understand good job cops yall was doing yall job. thats what the taxpayers pay you to do. good shooting though i bet he played alot of CALL OF DUTY online.

    (4)(6)
  6. "If they wanted to shoot him that’s okay" said one witness.... Really? so what is all tghe fuss about. Permission granted, game over.

    (0)(10)
  7. People people y are urll so dam foolish... So what urll saying is that from u run from police u need to be shot ...stupid... People .did he put a gun no regardless... If he had one or not....was the police life in danger no...he was running away from the police...smh...asking now....is this how urll in st Lucia want the police to handle they affair... All who that will say yes...smfh at urll...nobody not telling the police don't do they job...we need policeing in our Lil island but all we asking is that urll do the job the right way...police in st Lucia don't like to run and that's part of a police job...they lazy..from anything police want to brust they guns...smh..that's not the way...its the police that's the mob...and u people who supporting what the police are doing..urll will have urll turn wen them same police kill one of urll family member...

    (13)(0)
    • yup that's the police biggest problem right there, to damn fat and lazy, i always laugh when i see the blubber police dem run after criminals, lol is like 5meter dash and that's it for them. dem man drinking to much beers, one of the biggest consumers of alcohol are police officers. only in stlucia i seeing so many obese officers, they will never run after you for more than 5meters cuz you dun lose dem already. Y you think criminals getting away from them so easily. So the young cops coming up learning from dem lazy fellas to doe run or you'll get tired just shoot. the police report will save them again. Cuz as usual we awaiting further investigation lol. Bag a tricks.

      (3)(0)
  8. In the coming months St. Lucia will encounter more of those searches. It is the best proven method to capture guns. I don't buy the story that he was scared. After all, there are GROUP of guys going through the same process. It is not the victim alone. His failure to comply with basic orders like putting his hands up placed the officers at risk. After he fled behind the shanty, he placed himself at even greater risk because the officer doesn't know if he is armed. Actions like the victim's are dangerous. Please everyone, comply with the orders given at searches.

    (7)(5)
    • a wah d rass da idiot man a talk. Everybody know when dem popo role is beh foolishness could happen, to cussing you out, treating you like shit, force you to smell they rum mouth, abuse both physical and verbal, take you central for no reason, or some unknown spot far far away and you have to find your way back, cuz you never know when dem mun have their chack taking them. we are all entertainment to dem fellas but i sense the tide is turning it aint gonna be that way for long......police and their love ones bleed to.............. remember dat. When living in a glass house one should always be thinking about throwing stones.......

      (3)(2)
  9. Are we forgetting this same individual was involved in a shooting last week? He may not have been up to no good then but clearly his history says something ....These are the same fellas robbing innocent ppl. I don't agree to him being shot but make up y'all minds.....Do we want more or less of these types of ppl on the streets?

    (19)(4)
    • Why is it that when something happens which involves gangs and criminals no one from the public will come forward.... no eyewitnesses but when it's the police there are so many eyewitnesses......smfh......all the fools who comment about police this and police that are all alleged criminals just like the stupid criminal who got shot

      (3)(2)
  10. St.lucisns don't know what they want....whether the police do their job or not they complaining....make up you'll damn minds.....y is it that eyewitnesses will give so many details on a police shooting but when the shootings are happening amoung themselves (gangs) no eyewitness comes forward....so in other words you'll afraid of the criminals and not the police....but any way rip young man and condolences to the family

    (18)(3)
  11. Just something to think about readers...1) Don't u know that criminals or gang members could hire their own to join the force? ...so before some of u call the police names such as retarded etc,think about that.RiP young man

    (1)(3)
  12. one less trouble maker dead man tell no tales

    (4)(4)
  13. Police not good

    (1)(5)
  14. The police or nobodys life was threatened or in any danger for that matter.this killing cannot be justified..life taken uselessly

    (3)(1)
  15. shouldn't have run...

    what a jackass

    (11)(4)
  16. I'm Absolutely against police killings, police brutality, infact i dont even like police. however the police have a right to shoot if the case is self-defense, because regardless who you are you have to defend yourself. that being said, man have to use their mind, the police roll on you, they have guns, what you think they have the guns for...style?...you should nt run. all the guys that stayed there and complied are alive reading my comment. it was better you try to throw what you have in the bush or kick that away. Even if they arrest you, lucia that deh by next year you out. Nothing making them young police happier when a man play he running. As black men we have to use our minds more, things already hard in society we have to elevate

    (19)(7)
    • ok so they have guns to burst, kill and murder people, whether they are armed or not. good point i always looked at it that way. thats y i stay far from dem trigger happy fellas, and i'll run wether innocent or not cuz from time dem mun touch d road u already guilty. and anyting could happen. like shooting a mun thats fleeing with a shotgun and blasting his brains out a lil far fetched but it could happen.

      (1)(0)
  17. i am not for or against the police or civilian, but here are my questions: why did he run? why did he run in that direction? why did the police chose to shot him instead of run after him? as someone who knows about guns, no police intends on shooting someone in the head, i know that at the end of it they have to face the courts and give reason why they shot the victim, ALONE. it's truly sad that one has to lose their life over simple shit, but if you're given a command then follow and comply. you run , who knows what you're running for , either to escape or get something. note well i'm not looking for an excuse for the police , i think that could of been avoided. how is it that civilians are killing each other and no one says anything like what you'll are commenting but when a police does it you'll all over the place. i'm no police but you have to ask yourself these questions and not be so quick to blast them. sorry for your loss guys he was someone's son , brother, father, friend

    (16)(2)
    • Spoken like a true officer

      (2)(1)
    • not happy with some of the law men

      Ubask why he run...... didnt you read what the eye witness said..... ppl can panick especially having had a bad experience with the law before. If you know SLU u know at times the experience u get is something u dont ever wish to go through again. He was not wanted for murder nor for anynform of crime so the pokish could have chase him down or guve a warning shot not just kill him. May his soul rest in peace and may thatofficer who did this never find rest.

      (5)(5)
    • PoliceOfficerWithMoralsAndProperTraining

      You claim that you are not for or against but I can clearly see where you stand. People kill each other everyday but the duty of the police is to serve and protect. Police officers know better, they are trained to be different, their duty is to uphold the law and they are not above the law! Becoming a police officer is one of the highest ethical jobs one can have, you don't take on such responsibility if you know you're not ready. The life of civilians are in your hands when you become a police officer. You don't take a life unless you're trying to save a life. You don't shoot someone who is running away from you, Your life is not in danger in such a case! Don't come with your bullshit defence about he could have been going to get something. I have asked myself these questions, i'd like you to ask yourself the following questions: Was the police officer's life in danger? Did the police officer fear for his life when he saw the assailant running away from him? Was the assailant pointing a weapon at the police while trying to escape? Was the assailant firing shots at the police while he was running away from them? When did the police notice that the assailant was carrying a firearm?

      (13)(1)
      • There have been many police reports around the world where the police have claimed justification for killings by just the feeling of fear for life. Many of those reports have also been fabricated. It's a question of who to believe. Forensics will determine the direction of bullet entry and whether the runaway may have turned around at the time the gun was fired, in which case the cop could claim that he thought the deceased was attempting to shoot. Just the thought is sufficient for justification. Just saying.

        (0)(0)
        • PoliceOfficerWithMoralsAndProperTraining

          Police have a duty to themselves and their families and that is to go home at the end of the day however, they have to do whatever it takes to make sure that the other person gets an opportunity to return home to their family as well. Before a police officer discharges a weapon he is trained to say in an assertive voice " STOP! DON'T MOVE! DON'T MOVE OR I'LL SHOOT!" Did he warn the assailant before he discharged his firearm? In order to use the defence that he feared for his life he has to be able to prove it. As for forensics determining anything in this case, don't count on it.

          (0)(0)
          • PoliceOfficerWithMoralsAndProperTraining

            Principles of Law Enforcement
            1. The basic mission for which police exist is to prevent crime and disorder as an alternative to the repression of crime and disorder by military force and severity of legal punishment.
            2. The ability of the police to perform their duties is dependent upon public approval of police existence, actions, behavior and the ability of the police to secure and maintain public respect.
            3. The police must secure the willing cooperation of the public in voluntary observance of the law to be able to secure and maintain public respect.
            4. The degree of cooperation of the public that can be secured diminishes, proportionately, to the necessity for the use of physical force and compulsion in achieving police objectives.
            5. The police seek and preserve public favor, not by catering to public opinion, but by constantly demonstrating absolutely impartial service to the law, in complete
            independence of policy, and without regard to the justice or injustice of the substance of individual laws; by ready offering of individual service and friendship to all members of society without regard to their race or social standing, by ready exercise of courtesy and friendly good humor; and by ready offering of individual sacrifice in protecting and preserving life.
            6. The police should use physical force to the extent necessary to secure observance of the law or to restore order only when the exercise of persuasion, advice and warning
            is found to be insufficient to achieve police objectives; and police should use only the minimum degree of physical force which is necessary on any particular occasion for achieving a police objective.
            7. The police at all times should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and the public are the
            police; the police are the only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent on every citizen in the intent of the community welfare.
            8. The police should always direct their actions toward their functions and never appear to usurp the powers of the judiciary by avenging individuals or the state, or authoritatively judging guilt or punishing the guilty.
            9. The test of police efficiency is the absence of crime and disorder, not the visible evidence of police action in dealing with them.

            (1)(0)
    • jackass

      (0)(1)
  18. An extrajudicial killing

    (3)(3)
  19. the police force is in more problems now due to the actions of that officer An extrajudicial killing

    (3)(1)
  20. it hi time the police get shoot too

    (4)(14)
  21. So d man run what happen to dt
    Apparently you're God so u think its ok to take a mans life
    Thats not a dog thats a human beings
    Leaves me wondering how these assholes getting into the force

    (7)(4)
  22. If the eyewitnesses account is as stated then it begs to question the motive , training, disciplineand a lot more. It is however puzzling how in all or Kat police shootings some people always sees or knows Of all the details. Yet when shootings take place on broad day light in their area , nobody seems to ever know.
    Hmmmm!!! Puzzling

    (13)(0)
  23. Based on the account of the eyewitness, there are certain considerations that can be highlighted. My comment is not a position piece. Just making my comments. Some folks spend their time being "comment trolls" and they live to criticize and politicize other people's comments, looking for spelling, grammar, and all other worthless reasons to post about, insteated of making a worthwile contribution about the news article, or provide words of comfort, encouragement, or something enlightening.
    The eyewitness said that the policeman aimed at the victim's head while the vicim was running downhill. How can he be so sure? A body in motion going downhill. Aiming at the head would need great accuracy because the chances of missing is greater since the individual is moving downhill. The statement about 'obviously since he is running downhill one should consider that most likely the head may be in line of the shot' is a more acceptable to consider than the statement about the policeman purposefully aiming for the head. However, in the heat of the moment decision-making may not be the best, so the witness may have a point about the part of the body that may most probably be shot but he may not be correct in his assumption about which part of the body that the police was aiming for.
    This is a sad case. It is my opinion that the policeman did not set out to deliberately kill a man on that day. However, there is a need for the police to review their protocol for random drug searches and how to deal with individuals who may run away, especially when they do not present a threat to the lives of either the police or others in the immediate vicinity.
    If there are any grammatical or spelling errors, then I apologise beforehand to those who will be offended.
    My sympathies go out to the family and friends of the deceased.

    (11)(1)
  24. unbelievable... what on earth is going on in this country that i work hard to make a meaning contribution to... STUNNED

    (1)(1)
  25. The police force have a kinda retardeds, bunch of country bookies, bunch of dunces that so it's either KFC or the police force. You don't put this positions of power in the hands of these little pea brain clowns, this situations are bound to happen. The guy could have had a million ponds of coke on him he runs off, it still doesn't give any law enforcement officer to, for one thing use a lethal weapon like a shot gun to take him down, let alone aiming at his head. It's obvious this would most likely kill him.

    (4)(1)
  26. They were probably up to no good. Why did he run ? When a police command is disobeyed, the police has every right to take action. I wish he had not died, but he should not flee from the police. What did he have to hide ? Everyone serves as witness against the police but never against the criminasl. The police shooting may very well be justified. Too many criminals on the loose in this country. It's time for action.

    (18)(22)
    • That still don't give them right to shoot in the head with a 12 inch shot gun. Shoot him in the leg or something not to kill. You are not judge jury and prosecutor. You're just the law enforcement officer.

      (11)(2)
    • Wait till the situation lands in your family.... Action needs to be taken but not a gun shot. What's wrong in chasing him till he gets him?

      (5)(1)
    • why don't u shut ur a**..up to no good? chpz
      who said he was a criminal

      (1)(1)
  27. THe police should be brought before the courts to determine whether the death was unlawful and I hope all the witnesses show up. However, where does this man work? That's a pretty hefty chain, sir. Where are you employed? Any receipt for its purchase? I know we hide drug pushers and dealers here for many reasons. Did this guy indeed have a gun or a quality of narcotics? Why of all the multiple men under the shanty he is the only one to run? Run in with the law, nahhh come better. But that still does not empower the police officer to be the judge jury and executioner for a potential crime from a fleeing SUSPECT.

    (8)(5)
  28. police shoots a man, and the EYEWITNESSES ARE NAMED AND LAMBASTE THE POLICE FOR SHOOTING,
    meanwhile another shooting where two are executed and the witnesses are anonymous and have LITTLE TO SAY AT ALL.
    guess the public knows who to be afraid of huh
    padner say the police aimed at his head. How the hell you know that

    (8)(4)
  29. Black lives matter. Whilst we may not have a racial issue as does the USA, police in Saint Lucia unfairly target and bully those of a lower socioeconomic status. Regardless of who he is, and his family background, this man did not deserve to perish in such a manner. I hope that the security minister and COP finally examine the root cause of crime in our country and the part that our law enforcers play in the grand scheme of things.

    (3)(2)
  30. Send da dog n die dats total police brutality... y would u aim for the guys head.. besides how the hell u got into the police force u jackass... fucking abusing their authority

    (5)(0)
  31. Nothing will happen as usual to the officer...Remember the killing at the micoud police station & countless other "strange" shootings?
    This will be in the news for a little bit & die down as the police goes on PAID leave enjoying his mini vacation.
    The "JUST-US" system (some of you call the justice system) is for rich people,politicians,lawyers & anyone involved in law enforcement & they will NEVER convict one of their own.That's just the way it goes folks....Maybe the Union head will have something to say.

    (2)(1)
  32. Is this a next extra-judicial killings by the RSLPF. Will we have a next impacts? and is RSLPF protecting us or killing us ? Just hope when they doing they *shooting in community's* that they don't *shoot mother an kids* . smh at the *RSLPF*

    (1)(1)
  33. This is just so wrong in so many different ways but it does paint a clear image in one's head that the young officer did not use protocol.

    (2)(0)
  34. the testimony of the witness is solely rubbish

    (1)(5)

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