Gang hit claims life of Belize City man

By Rowland Parks Staff Reporter

The violent gang warfare that appears to have receded suddenly flared up on Sunday, when a 28-year-old working man was gunned down in gangland style in the city, as he rode his bicycle.
Belize City Police reported that they visited the KHMH around 7:30 on Sunday, where they saw Leon Giovanni Smith, a construction worker, suffering from gunshot wounds to his left chest, left upper back and left buttocks.
Police said they also saw Smith’s aunt, Brenda Harmond, 54, a school warden and resident of 2A Ebony Street, suffering from a gunshot graze to her right stomach.
Police reported that their initial investigation reveals that Smith was riding his bicycle on Ebony Street, and when he reached the corner of Ebony and Sitee Streets, an unknown gunman fired several shots in his direction, causing his injuries.
The gunman also fired a single shot at the front door of Harmond, causing her injury.
Scenes of Crime technicians recovered four .9mm expended shells from the scene and one live .9mm round.
The area where Smith was gunned down is a know gang area. But Smith family said he was not involved in any gang activity.
Smith, his family says, was employed with Cisco Construction and was a hard worker, who kept out of trouble.
Cisco Construction pays many city residents from the gang infested neighborhoods to spread loads of sand on Lake I Boulevard. They are paid by the amount of loads they spread on a daily basis.
His mother said he had gone on an errand to take food for his brother, who lives in that area.
Harmond told police that she was at home and had heard dynamite bursting, so when the gunshots erupted, she could not tell the difference in the sounds. But she had heard someone hollering for her. So she got up and began to walk toward the door, when she was shot.
Belize City Police have not made any arrest in this latest homicide, which is the first to occur in the city in almost 8 weeks.

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