The victims have been identified as Daniel Hall, 16, of Tunapuna and Stephan Singh, 17, of Enterprise, Chaguanas. Hall was a Form Four student of the Aranjuez North Secondary School and school officials confirmed that he had attended classes on Tuesday prior to being murdered. Singh sources said, attended the St Augustine Secondary School.
Police officers who were called to the scene after residents of St John’s Road heard rapid gunfire, came across the bodies of Hall and Singh, with the latter suffering a gunshot wound to the back of the head.
Hall was found with a .38 revolver stuck in his pants waist. Police were yesterday trying to ascertain if the schoolboys had criminal records and/or court cases.
The double murder, which has sent to national rate to 74 for the year so far, comes amid a time when issues of school violence and lawlessness have been very much in the public domain following several incidents including a plot by gangsters to invade a school and shoot dead a security guard and teacher; and another incident where a student pulled down his pants and exposed his genitals when he was confronted by a security guard over his behaviour.
According to reports, at about 4.30 pm on Tuesday, residents contacted the police after hearing rapid gunfire from a river close to a track off St John’s Road. Three men were seen running along the road.
One was holding a gun as he ran. A party of Northern Division officers led by Ag Insp Vetus Hernandez and including Sgt Rennie Katwaroo along with others visited the scene and the area was cordoned off. The teenagers’ bodies were removed to the Forensic Science Centre in St James for autopsies.
Joy Hall yesterday told Newsday news of her son’s murder came as a great shock to her. “Me son grew up fearing God and although he was like any other teenager, I never knew him to be involved in crime,” Hall said. She added that her son was the third of her seven children and members of her family are in a daze over his killing.
Hall said she does not know the other victim Stephan Singh and added that she is seeking answers over her son’s murder. “Right now I do not feel like even talking. My boy is dead and I don’t know why.
What is really going on in this country, where so many young people are being slaughtered,” the grieving woman said.
This incident is the second double- murder of schoolboys this year.
On January 23, Success Laventille Secondary School students Denilson Smith, 17, and Mark Richards, 15, were dragged out of a PH (private-hire) taxi they were passengers in along a road in Laventille and then gunned down. Both died in their school uniforms. No arrests have been made in the two double-murders.