With news of a 50% reduction in murders in Belize City this year, many residents may be forgiven for breathing a sigh of relief. Unfortunately, there is, hopefully, one last flare up of violence to report on the Belize City streets for 2013.
Around 7:30 on Sunday night, December 29, Leon Giovanni Smith, 28, a construction worker of the CET Site area in Lake Independence, was shot in the left chest, left upper back and buttocks by a single gunman at the corner of Ebony Street and the Lakeview Canal.
He was at his aunt Brenda Herman’s house on Ebony Street and was riding off to go home when the gunman appeared and opened fire. Herman told us off-camera that as Smith shouted for help, the gunman turned and fired once at the front door of Herman’s home. Standing just a foot or so behind, she was helpless to avoid the bullet, which tore through the door and grazed the right side of her stomach. Smith died around 11:10 p.m. while in surgery. Four 9mm expended shells and a live round were recovered by police from the scene. We understand that Smith was working at the Chetumal Boulevard project site prior to his death and was not known to be a troublemaker or in conflict with the law. Police investigations continue