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Teen stabbed, thrown in river

Published: 
Saturday, August 12, 2017
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Police officers at the Bethel ‘The House of God’ church where the body of Emmanuel Okira was found yesterday. Photo by:Micheal Bruce

KEVON FELMINE

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Hours after going outside the Bethel House of God Church to sell produce to help his mother make ends meet, 15-year-old Emmanuel Okeiro’s mutilated body was being fished out a Freeport River.

Autopsy reports showed that Okeiro was stabbed 15 times on the neck, face and scalp.

Forensic pathologist, Dr Valery Alexandrov said that in recreating the scenario, the 176 lb Okeiro would have been restrained by one or two attackers while another stabbed him.

Alexandrov said that although the wounds were superficial, they caused severe blood loss. By the time Okeiro broke loose from his attackers and ran away, he collapsed from haemorrhagic shock.

While unconscious, he was thrown into the river behind the church and he drowned, the pathologist opined.

News of Okeiro’s murder sent shock waves through the Calcutta community yesterday as neighbour’s described him as a respectful and decent young man.

“Just yesterday I saw him walking out the road and he was making jokes with me. He was such a good young boy,” a worker at the nearby business along Seeram Trace said yesterday. A neighbour said he was a hard worker who spent hours in the sun, selling his goods.

Okeiro, who lived in Calcutta #1 with his mother and would usually sell eggplants and tomatoes from his garden in front of the church along Calcutta #2.

Reports stated that around 2.15 pm Thursday, he left home to set up his stall and was expected to stay there for a few hours. Witnesses reported that they saw him set up his table and was selling at the roadside. His mother told police that she called him on his mobile phone around 3.15 pm and everything was well.

But an hour later when she called again, his phone rang out and went to his voice mail. After several calls, she began to worry and decided to go to the area and search for herself. When that failed, she contacted Freeport police and Sgt Jobe and other officers joined the search.

The officers said they found a significant amount of blood near the annex of the church and called in Crime Scene Investigators to process the scene. However, Okeiro still could not be found.

When ASP Smith, Sgt Jobe, PC Smith and PC Huggins returned yesterday, they spotted something floating in a widened part of the river. When the officers checked, they found Okeiro’s body floating face down in approximately five feet of water. Region Three Homicide Officers along the District Medical Officer visited the scene.

When the T&T Guardian visited yesterday, the church compound was closed with a few members and police officers in the yard. They declined to speak about the incident.

No one was at Okeiro’s home either. Residents suspect that someone may have robbed him, however, police said they are working on information which they could not disclose.