Friends killed by police remembered as inseparable in life

A relative of Fabien Richards is consoled by his mother Nicole Richards, during his funeral at Latoya Rhea Romany Funeral Chapel, St James, on Monday. Photo by Angelo Marcelle
A relative of Fabien Richards is consoled by his mother Nicole Richards, during his funeral at Latoya Rhea Romany Funeral Chapel, St James, on Monday. Photo by Angelo Marcelle

Isaiah Roberts and Fabien Richards, two of three people killed by police two Saturdays ago at Independence Square, Port of Spain, were inseparable in life, mourners were told at Richards’ funeral on Monday.

Roberts, 17, was buried on Friday.

The third person, 17-year-old Leonardo Williams, will be buried on Tuesday.

During her tribute, Sadyi John, Richards’ girlfriend and Roberts’ aunt, said her nephew and Richards, 21, were always together, and when Roberts could not go out with Richards, he would not go to sleep until he was sure Richards was back home. John said everywhere Richards went, Roberts wanted to go. She said it was heartbreaking to know they were killed, but she was comforted by the fact that Roberts, like Richards, was a Christian.

“I know that he is waiting for Fabien and they will be together for everlasting life. They went together and I know they will spend the rest of eternity together.”

Also paying tribute was Richards’ cousin Ricardo Reyes who spoke at Ahh-Venue, Church Street, St James, where Richards’ funeral was held.

Reyes said relatives will get revenge through God.

Fabien Richards’ body is removed from the Latoya Rhea Romany Funeral Chapel in St James after his funeral on Monday. Photo by Angelo Marcelle

“I know vengeance is not our own, vengeance is God’s and I am positive we will get revenge,” he said as the congregation clapped loudly. Richards, Williams and Roberts were killed by police on July 2. Police claimed they were fired upon and had to return fire resulting in the three being killed.

Three others survived, including a 15-year-old who was shot in the arm and grazed on the abdomen and leg. Police claimed a Smith and Wesson pistol was found in the car.

The autopsy reports said Richards died of multiple gunshot wounds to the back of the head, neck and upper limbs. Williams died from multiple gunshot wounds to the back, right buttocks and forearm. Roberts died of multiple gunshots to the back of the head and right lower back.

Reyes added that he was a proud man from Laventille and encouraged those in attendance from so-called hot-spot areas to be proud of their addresses.

“Don’t be afraid to put your address when applying for a job, and if they don’t hire you that is their problem, not yours.”

During the eulogy, Richards’ mother Nicole Richards recalled giving birth to him at home after many false alarms. She said her son became like her grandson after his sister Nicola cared for him most of his life like a mother would. Nicola, who paused to cry during the eulogy, recalled that at the age of 11, Richards said he wanted to get baptised.

Bishop Patrick Denoon of the St John’s Spiritual and Love Baptist Church, who described himself as Richards’ spiritual father, took a page from Pastor Wayne Baptiste, who officiated Roberts’ funeral. Both men spoke of time, referencing Psalm 90, and the importance of using it wisely.

He said the only negative thing he could recall about Richards was that he was cheap. He told the congregation that while they mourn, remember love conquers all and Richards was a loving soul.

“He used to get me vex sometimes because we can be talking about serious things but he laughing. But I got to understand him, and that was his trigger to release his stress and frustration.”

Richards was buried at the Tunapuna public cemetery while Roberts was laid to rest at the San Juan public cemetery.


"Friends killed by police remembered as inseparable in life"

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