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Tuesday 20 November 2018
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‘I lay over my son as gunshots rang out’

Akiel Charles was gunned down close to his Theresa Street, Marabella home on Thursday evening. Police say Charles was a pest who had been charged 34 times for gun and gun-related offences.
Akiel Charles was gunned down close to his Theresa Street, Marabella home on Thursday evening. Police say Charles was a pest who had been charged 34 times for gun and gun-related offences.

WHEN she heard gunshots outside her Bayshore, Marabella home, a woman lay flat on the ground on top of her sleeping two-year-old son, intent on protecting him at all cost. After the incident, she recalled fearfully peeping from behind her fence and seeing a man’s body on the ground.

The man, Akiel “Doggie” Charles, 27, was shot over ten times. Although Charles’ killing is the first on that street, the woman said those who live there do so in constant fear as criminals take advantage of a lack of streetlights along the dirt track to carry out illegal activities.

She said repeated appeals to their MP, Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi have fallen on deaf and uncaring ears. Police said at 6 pm on Thursday, they received a report of gunshots along the dirt track off Theresa Street, Marabella.

They found Charles’ body under a tree. Police described him as a pest, who was charged 34 times for firearm-related offences. Several pending matters against him for allegedly shooting at a relative were dismissed in the San Fernando Magistrates’ Court hours earlier, on Thursday morning. None of his relatives were at the house where Charles lived when Newsday visited.

Residents said Charles had recently come into the area to live and would often be seen walking through the community with a gun in his hand or stuck in the waist of his pants. “He would walk through with his face wring up, gun outside for everybody to see...he wasn’t a nice person,” a resident said.

She said since a bridge into the track was repaired, the lane has become a haven for criminals. “When you see they do something, they could run down here from any side and hide in the dark cause once the sun down, down here it black like pitch. There are no street lights.”

Residents yesterday begged Al-Rawi to treat families living along the lane with some dignity and respect. “We just want electricity, that’s all we are asking for. I went to TTEC and they told me is $6,000 to put a pole down in the lane. I went to Al-Rawi’s office and they said they would help, but it look like they forget about us as soon as we left the office.”

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