This week the Police Department has come under fire for the alleged role of police officers in Punta Gorda in the death of 18 year old Rasheed Elijio. Elijio was shot while being chased by police officers who claimed that he escaped from them while being transported to Central Prison after arraignment on a charge of carnal knowledge with a 15 year old minor. Elijio was shot once in the back, but several shots were by the responding police officers and the officer in charge says no one has owned up to it. Commissioner of Police Allen Whylie said today that the Department has launched its investigation into the incident.
Allen Whylie – Commissioner of Police:
Let me first express condolences to the family of Mr. Elijio. As explained, there is a thorough investigation, both criminally, as well as internally being done. I know that sentiments are high, because yes it is a Police related shooting, but the process of investigation is not an overnight system and it does take time, indeed the post mortem results were required and the ballistics is needed to confirm which weapon. There were a number of different weapons out there. Officers have admitted to shooting, the difference is none have admitted to shooting the individual and that will take place during the investigation and ballistic margin. Hopefully those will be done very shortly and then we will be able to submit that file to the Director Of Public Prosecution.
The simultaneous investigation is for both criminal and internal charges and the results will be forwarded to the DPP for perusal and suggestions on charges. One of the officers accused in the matter has previously been accused of involvement in police-related shooting deaths for which he was transferred from Belize City.