PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad – Police are denying media reports that the officer who was gunned down in a sting operation gone wrong on Monday may have been killed because he was a witness in a criminal matter involving other lawmen.
And they have described the reports that allege police involvement in the shooting death of Constable Russell Ramnarine as “highly irresponsible speculation”.
“Such reckless reporting has not only caused emotional distress among the ranks of the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS), but has also resulted in untold pain and hurt to the family and loved ones of the slain officer. The Trinidad and Tobago Police Service asserts that there is no evidence whatsoever to support the unfounded speculation and urges the media to be more responsible in its reporting of the case,” it said.
Ramnarine, 24, and 22-year-old University of the West Indies engineer student Avery Keshwar, were killed around 5:15 a.m. in Aranguez, a community in the town of San Juan, where the two, along with a uniformed officer, went to recover a cell phone that had been reported stolen by Keshwar.
“When the suspect observed the uniformed officer seated in the vehicle, he took off on foot causing PC Ramnarine who was in plainclothes and the other officer, to alight from their vehicle and give chase along Williams Street, Aranguez. The uniformed officer continued the pursuit while PC Ramnarine made his way back to the vehicle where Avery was still seated. Upon entering the vehicle, shots from the nearby barbecue outlet were fired at both men who subsequently died at the scene,” a police statement said.
Four people, including a woman, are being questioned in connection with the killings.
A gun was recovered at the scene, the TTPS said.
Meantime, president of the Police Service Social and Welfare Association Anand Ramesar has called for an investigation to determine who ordered the sting operation and sent out Ramnarine, who had been a police officer for just over a year, and the other constable. (Caribbean 360)
Dead are Police Constable Russell Ramnarine (left) and UWI engineering student Avery Keshwar.