Another grenade is found in the streets of Belize City

For the second time in less than four days, police and the Belize Defence Force were called out to retrieve a hand grenade from the streets of Belize City. This time, it was in a familiar neighborhood, a stone’s throw away from the scene of the very first grenade attack which took place in May of 2008.

The American-type explosive device, if used, could have caused even greater damage if detonated than the British grenade which exploded in that area, killing 1 young man and wounding 12 others. But it was retrieved without incident and authorities are now seeking to find out who placed it there and what plans there were for it.

Senior Superintendent Edward Broaster, Deputy Officer Commanding Eastern Division and also Commander of Operations, addressed the press. He recounts how the grenade was recovered.

vlcsnap-2014-09-12-06h25m27s137Edward Broaster – Deputy Commander, Eastern Division, Belize Police Department

“Last week when we briefed you about the grenade that we discovered on Banak Street, I informed you all that I would give you an update sometime this week.  Fortunately for us, yesterday we got a call in regards to another grenade, which we discovered on Mayflower Street.

The call came in at 10 o’ clock, and as soon as we got that call we went to the area. We cordoned off the area.  We searched and we discovered one American type grenade. Fortunately for us the bomb expert was at the ceremonial service at the Memorial Park, and he was called in and he came and secured that grenade, and took it away for disposal.”

Belize’s premier bomb expert and commander of the Belize Defence Force, Brigadier General David Jones, was at the official ceremony for St. George’s Caye Day across town at the Memorial Park, but was called in to safely dispose of the grenade. He has said that it was a type that could have caused serious damage if exploded. But were there plans to use the grenade on the national holiday itself – perhaps during official events? Superintendent Broaster says no.

Senior Superintendant Edward Broaster

“From the intelligence and the information that we’ve gathered through our investigation, there is no intention to lodge any grenade in any mass crowd, as it pertains to carnival or any of the parades, in particular this last one. We don’t have any information to suggest that it would have been used in any of these festivities.”

Police have questioned several persons in relation to the incident, and say that at this time they are looking into where the grenade came from and how it got to the area.

Sr. Supt. Broaster told reporters that they got a call around 10:00 a.m., and all indications were that the grenade had been placed in the area within 30 minutes of that call.

The alleged plant is a different person from whoever placed the British grenade recovered on Saturday at Banak Street. A .38 revolver was also recovered.

For now, the grenade has been labeled as found property as there was no one in the area. But Sr, Supt. Broaster responded to cynical suggestions that police may have planted the device in order to boost their own profile.

He explains why that is a dangerous thought – in more ways than one.

Senior Superintendant Edward Broaster

“That narrative there is definitely ludicrous. We would never do anything to endanger the life of the public. As a matter of fact this American grenade is much more dangerous according to Brigadier General Jones than the British grenade, and we would never ever do any such thing to jeopardize the lives of the public.”

 

Police expect to continue finding grenades, though they are not sure where they may be hidden./

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