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Update - Guard killed in highway heist identified

...Estate Assistant Superintendent of Police Bert Clarke killed

By SUSAN MOHAMMED susan.mohammed@trinidadexpress.com

A SECURITY guard was shot dead by thieves who stole more than a quarter million dollars during the hijacking of a security company vehicle in Macoya today. The guard has been identified as Bert Clarke. Clarke, 59, was an Estate Superintendent of Police, who worked at Sentinel for over 36 years. It was his first and only job, and he was due to retire next year. He lived at Bregon Park, D’abadie.
His daughter Susanna Clarke is a former Express sub-editor.

Police have launched a search for the killers. A stretch of highway between Tunapuna and Maloney has been closed to allow the crime scene to be investigated. Heavy rainfall throughout the morning has hampered the police investigation.

At around 4.30 a.m. a van owned by Sentinel Security Service Limited with two employees was headed east along the Churchill Roosevelt Highway en-route from Port of Spain to the Piarco International Airport.

Police said when in the vicinity of Johnson and Johnson Limited, the security van was struck from behind by a black Ford Ranger.
When the security company driver stopped, the occupants of the Ranger approached the guards.

The men opened fire, hitting Clarke, who was in the passenger seat. He died at the scene. The officer in the driver's seat got out of the van and ran into the bushes, while the thieves raided the van and stole the loot. Six bags containing cash were stolen. The suspects abandoned the Ranger and escaped in another vehicle. Only when police arrived on the scene did the surviving security guard emerge from the bushes. The Ford Ranger, which contained bags on cement in the tray, was identified as a stolen vehicle.

Police said that Clarke was shot multiple times. A white SUV was later found abandoned in Piarco. Police recovered more than 50 spent shells at the scene of the killing. Senior Superintendent John Daniel, Inspector Mark Maharaj, Northern Division officers, and Homicide Division - Arouca were on the scene.

Police are currently at the scene.
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