Saint Lucia police on Tuesday dispelled “various rumours” surrounding the fatal police shooting of Miguel ‘Mad Max’ Edward in the Rodney Bay Marina in Gros Islet on Saturday, November 2, 2019.
Edward was reportedly being sought by the lawmen in connection with an alleged attack on a 105-year-old woman in the north of the island when he was caught attempting to board a vessel destined for neighbouring Martinique.
Edward was shot after he allegedly pulled a weapon at the officers. He succumbed at a hospital.
Reports on social media have claimed that in addition to being sought for the rape of the centenarian at 4 a.m. on Saturday, November 2, Edward was wanted for raping a sheep, attempted rape of a girl in Marisule, and attempted rape of another elderly in Grand Riviere, Gros Islet.
During a press briefing on Tuesday, police spokeswoman Corporal Ann Joseph said ‘Mad Max’ Edward was only wanted for questioning in connection with reports on Friday, November 1 and Saturday, November 2 — and nothing prior.
“We would like to dispel various rumors that we’ve been hearing in relation to those reports,” Joseph said.
“These reports stemmed from the first of November 2019 and the second of November 2019. Prior to reports that have reached us, there were no prior incidents where he was wanted for questioning or was identified as a formal suspect, prior to those dates. These were fresh matters that he was under investigation for. All previous matters that the police have any reason to have had him questioned for, have been dealt with,” she added.
According to MBC, in 2018 Edward was charged for the possession of an unlicensed firearm, a matter “already dispensed with” and that he was on bail for the offense of robbery with the use of a firearm in 2016, a matter which was before the courts until his death on November 2.
However, according to MBC, Edward was wanted in connection with attempted robbery, assault with a firearm and some sexual offenses. These matters arose between November 1 and November 2, according to reports.
Joseph meanwhile explained what occurred on the day — around noon — when Grand Riviere, Gros Islet resident was shot by the police.
“And on the second of November, officers were only seeking to apprehend him in relation to the matters which were reported on the first and second of November 2019… Leaving the Customs area at the port of entry and he attempted to evade arrest.
“Officers gave chase and were able to corner him but at that point, he withdrew a weapon and attempted to assault one of the two officers with that weapon. The officer discharged a round of ammunition in his direction and medical assistance was sought to treat his injuries. However, he succumbed at the Victoria Hospital,” the police spokeswoman said.
She was unable to say what type of weapon Edward allegedly brandished when he was shot by the police.
Investigations continue in the matter, Joseph said.