TWO men who were found shot dead inside a car near Ortinola Estate, Maracas, St Joseph, were yesterday described by their relatives as shady characters.
The men have been identified as Nicholas Junior Ashton, 27, also known as "Palance", and his friend and neighbour Akil Randy Bristol, 24, both of Wharf Trace, Maracas, St Joseph.
TV6 News reported last night that 20 murders have taken place within the 45 days of the State of Emergency, according to figures supplied by the Homicide Division.
Ashton and Bristol were discovered shortly after 8 p.m. by Cpl Andre Joseph and other officers from the Northern Division Task Force, who responded to a report of gunshots being heard in the area.
Bristol, the driver of the vehicle, had gunshot injuries to the body while part of Ashton's face was blown away during the attack. Police believe he was shot with a shotgun.
The men were discovered by police inside a black Mazda 323 motorcar on the roadway near the Ortinola Estate.
A black car was seen fleeing the scene shortly after the incident, and officers believe both victims were lured to their death.
Ashton's mother, Carol Millette, during an interview with the Express at the Forensic Science Centre, St James, said the incident did not come as a surprise because of the persons with whom her son associated.
She said on the night of the incident, which she only found out about early yesterday morning, she heard police sirens and saw a helicopter hovering in the area but paid no attention to it.
Millette, who added that she would miss her son, said she tried hard to raise him in the right way, but he deviated from such values and clung to persons of ill repute. Ashton was the father of two children, his mother said.
She said: "He was just at the wrong place with the wrong people at the wrong time. He moving around with some fellas who is imps. Mischief? He doh really be on that, but you could find him sometimes on the block smoking weed and that is about it, but to say he was in gang thing, nah. Wharf Trace doh really have no gang, but anybody could tell you it have plenty weed."
Arrangements, Millette added, were being made to bury both men together.
A male relative of Bristol yesterday said he believed the incident may have been triggered by a fracas during a lime after a church harvest on Sunday, in which Bristol and one of his friends were said to have pistol-whipped two men near a bar in the area.
The relative added that even though Bristol was never charged by the police for any offences, he was known in the area to possess illegal firearms and marijuana.
The man said: "I put him out from by me already because I told him I don't want him here with his criminal behaviour, for the police to be coming and searching my place every minute.
"He was a cool fella but like the bad boy lifestyle, and this is what happened to him now.
"I last saw him around 7 p.m. when he came for the car, which was in the garage, and say some fella have he (Bristol's) name in the police station for beating him with a gun butt, and he want to go and reason with the man (victim).
"Well, he reasoning apparently went well, and he going to reason seven feet under the earth now because of his lifestyle," the relative said.
Bristol was a popular face in downtown Port of Spain where he worked as a doubles vendor on Henry Street, in Independence Square.
Police yesterday said they did not have any possible motives for the incident, which is being investigated by Policewoman Cpl Davis and PC Jasper of the Region II Homicide Bureau of Investigations. Also visiting the scene were Snr Supt David Abraham, ASP Hosein, Insp Mohammed and Sgts Vetus Hernandez, Basdeo Sinanan and David.