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Carwash worker slain after threat

Published: 
Wednesday, January 7, 2015

A 23-year-old father of two became this country’s 13th murder victim when he was gunned down at a carwash on Railway Road, St Joseph, yesterday. Joshua Nipper was ambushed and shot dead while another man, Akim Reid, sustained gunshot wounds in full view of co-workers, friends and customers at around 1.45 pm. The incident occurred just over two hours after the shooting death of a bandit who, along with an accomplice, had just committed a robbery at a roti shop opposite Maritime Plaza, Barataria. 

In the later incident, Nipper was sitting under a tarpaulin in the area where they washed vehicles when a gold Nissan Tiida pulled into Railway Road. A man got out of the car and shot at Nipper and Reid. Nipper was hit several times and died on the spot while Reid was rushed to the nearby Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, Mt Hope, where he underwent emergency surgery. Nipper, who was originally from Lopinot, had been living in  St Joseph for a short period. 

Both friends and relatives claimed Nipper had received threats the previous day from a man they believe was responsible for the shooting. One relative of the victim, who asked not to be identified due to the sensitive nature of the case, believed the person who threatened Nipper either placed a hit on him or committed the act himself. Witnesses said they could not positively identify the shooter as his face was covered during the shooting.

However, the relative confirmed that Nipper was aware his life was in danger especially after the threat that was made. “He (the suspect) said ‘When I see you next, I will kill you,’ and he said that in the presence of others,” according to the relative. “This is complete injustice.”

Guard kills bandit after robbery
Earlier, at around 11.30 am, the slain gunman, identified as Kerman Andrews of Port-of-Spain, and a second suspect, had just robbed a patron at a roti shop on Tenth Avenue, Barataria, when, in attempting to escape, they were confronted by two armed guards from a security firm. One of the guards opened fire on the bandits, hitting Andrews, but his accomplice managed to escape in a vehicle which was left idling nearby.

Police arrived soon after and cordoned off the area. Acting Snr Supt Radcliffe Boxhill, who was at the scene, said the second suspect escaped with “thousands in cash” which he had taken from the patron at the shop. A Jericho semi-automatic gun, believed to have been used by Andrews, was recovered at the scene.  Boxhill said it appeared that the gunmen saw the patron with a large sum of cash and used the opportunity to rob him. He said nothing was taken from the roti shop.

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