Gerald “Shiny” Tillett is dead; retaliatory shootings kill another in Belize City

Reputed George Street Gang Boss 36 year old Gerald “Shiney” Tillett is dead. He was killed by a single gunshot wound to the head. The shooting happened while he and two others were socializing at the popular gambling spot, Wadani Shed, on St. Vincent Street in Dangriga Saturday night. We hear from Superintendent Mark Stephens, Acting Officer Commanding Dangriga Police:

Mark Stephens, Acting Officer Commanding Dangriga Police: Dangriga police responded to information received of a shooting at the Wugadanie Shed. They visited that location and the Southern Regional Hospital emergency ward where they observed three persons receiving treatment for gunshot wounds. Gerald Tillett, who received a single gunshot wound to the head, David Rodriguez who is the vlcsnap-2016-04-19-11h27m11s423proprietor of the Wugadanie Shed who received gunshot wounds to the right side of his chest and was treated and released, and Carlos Sharp who received gunshot wounds to the center of his chest. While police was still at the hospital, we had one Nicholas Swazo who arrived at the Southern Regional Hospital was suffering from 4 gunshot wounds to the upper right side of his back and the lower back. Our initial investigation reveled that at around 7:10 last night on Saturday the 16th of April Gerald Tillett, David Rodriguez and Carlos Sharp were socializing with others under the Wugadanie Shed when a male person of Dark complexion approached and fired gunshots. A handgun caused injuries to the three persons. To date we know that Gerald Tillett has succumbed to his injuries.   

It is confirmed that Swazo was at the same location of the shooting. Two of the survivors have since been transported to the Western Regional Hospital where they remain in a stable condition.  That transfer to Belmopan caused some grief for the Western Regional Hospital Staff and Belmopan police as a swarm of George Street Affiliates made their way to the hospital prompting armed security at the hospital. We’ll tell you more about that a little later on. But before that, we spoke with a relative of David Rodriguez who asked not to be identified. She describes what she saw:

Relative of David Rodriguez: Well I don’t know what happened I only heard a shot then I see men running on the street that’s it.vlcsnap-2016-04-19-11h29m39s683

Aaron Humes, Reporter: Okay you said you thought it was a popshot.

Relative of David Rodriguez: Yeah I thought that it was a popshot but then I see the gunman run into the street and that’s when I realized something was wrong.

Dangriga Police recovered two expended 9mm shells from the scene but have yet to recover any firearms. Information from those in the area was that the alleged gunman observed the area before apparently covering his head in a hoodie before the shooting. He was seen fleeing afterward with wounds of his own, but it is not known who shot at him. Tillett was a regular at the Shed and was attended by his bodyguards up to the time of the incident when they reportedly left to make a purchase. Commander of Eastern Division South, Assistant Commissioner Chester Williams confirmed that they have been in communication with their counterparts down south and made one detention:

Commissioner Chester Williams, Commander of Eastern Division South: I know in the relation to the shooting death of Gerald Tillett, Dangriga police have one person of interest in custody who is also injured and the investigation around that person and any other possible suspect continues.

Meanwhile in Belize City, where the George Street Gang is based, it appears that Shiney’s death sparked retaliatory shootings. Here again is ACP Williams:vlcsnap-2016-04-19-11h31m15s995

Commissioner Chester Williams, Commander of Eastern Division South: If there should be any retaliation the retaliation will be here in Belize City and not in Dangriga where the incident took place.

Reporter: Do you have any addition information on those shootings we were told that there may have been as many as 7 shooting last night.

Commissioner Chester Williams, Commander of Eastern Division South: I know we had three incidents were persons were actually shot including one murder which took place in the Farber’s Road area on Madam Liv Crescent. We had another shooting took place on Cayo street where a person was missing on the arm and leg and another shooting on Berger Field where one person was shot in the groin area, those three shootings, and we have others where no one was shot in those incidents.

Reporter: But is anyone believed to be linked in any way to the shooting of Gerald Tilett?

Commissioner Chester Williams, Commander of Eastern Division South:  At this moment I’m not going to comment on that, the investigation is still in its infantry stage. The police in Dangriga are working diligently on that and they’re being assisted by investigators from Belize City. We also have persons from the GSU who will work with us. We have teamed up with them in effort to maintain calm in Belize City and the presence of police officers and GSU will be seen in the known gang ridden areas as well as the other areas because we cannot just focus on the gang ridden areas and not watch the other parts of Belize. We will do as best as we can to ensure that we distribute police presence equally throughout the city.  

As to the fatal shooting in Belize City, the victim has been identified as 22-year-old Kadeem “Wing” Castillo of Faber’s Road extension. There were additional shootings that did not involve anyone sustaining injuries. Belize City Police were on high alert and moved to effectively “lock down” the Old Capital. Gerald Tillett was the younger brother and junior partner to the late Shelton “Pinky” Tillett in the George Street Gang. Pinky was fatally shot along with a female companion nearly four years ago; while he was being brought in in connection with that incident, rival boss Arthur Young struggled with police and later died of his injuries. The younger Tillett was also caught up in a bloody battle on George Street turf with the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU) in August of 2011.

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