Eleven year old dies in gang war

Belize City Police have detained Andrew Willoughby for the death of 11-year-old Daniel Matura who was shot dead shortly before 9:00 Monday morning, May 21st.

Roy Bennett and Brandon Taylor were reportedly riding past the Matura’s yard and allegedly shouted: “I wah kill all ah unu.”

Assistant Commissioner of Police Elodio Aragon Jr., the officer commanding Eastern Division, said at a media briefing on Tuesday, May 22, “Willoughby, who was inside the Matura’s yard, came out with a firearm and fired shots at Taylor and Bennett, who rode away.”

Willoughby missed, but his bullets struck Daniel Matura in the left side of his chest, right side of his back and his left ring finger.

Daniel died before the pickup that was transporting him arrived at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital.

Aragon said that  Willoughby gave a cautioned statement to the police, who are actively investigating the case.

Police Superintendent Dawson, the head of the Crimes Investigation Branch, said Daniel’s death resulted from a retaliation attempt against Brandon Taylor.

Dawson said Taylor, who is in police custody, is the main suspect for the murder of Kaylon Matura who was also shot at almost the same location on Thursday, May 17.

Aragon confirmed that the shootings are gang related.

Daniel’s mother, Marva Mendoza, 44, told The Reporter that she was at her home on Arlington Avenue when she heard the first gunshot. She said she saw people running on Central American Boulevard and decided to go out there.

She said Daniel was going fishing with his friends in the Port area, and that is why he was on the street, when the gunshots were fired.

Daniel was a Std. III student at the Sister Clara Mohammed School, where the Vice Principal Marva Garcia remembered him as a unique child.

“Daniel was not academically gifted, but he was a friendly child and the first to run away from any trouble.

“On a recent school trip to the Belize Defense Force camp at Price Barracks. Daniel posed for a picture with a soldier’s rifle, saying that he wanted to be a soldier to defend Belize,” she recalled.

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