TURN your life around.
This is the simple message the grieving wife of 36-year-old Ricky Purcell sent out to his killers yesterday as she spoke with the Express outside the Forensic Science Centre, in St James, where she had moments before identified his body to allow an autopsy to be done.
Purcell's wife, who asked not to be identified by name, said she last spoke to her husband on Sunday morning. By 5 p.m. that day he was dead.
Police reports say that Purcell, of Granado Street, Barataria was approached by a man near his home. They had a brief conversation before the man pulled out a gun and shot the father of two, police said.
The killer escaped in a waiting vehicle. Police have no motive for his death.
Relatives said yesterday that he was killed because of envy, adding that a large gold chain owned by him was stolen by his killer.
Relatives said Purcell, the owner of Purcell's K9 Services, was a lover of children and adopted his five-year-old nephew after his father died.
Purcell's wife said the last thing she received from her husband was $20 and their 15-month-old son received a hug and his father's verbal expression of love.
Purcell's killing pushed the murder toll to 74, according to an Express tally. The comparable toll for the same period last year stood at 61.
In an unrelated incident, the death of Janet Alexander was ruled out as murder after her autopsy report stated she died of massive upper gastrointestinal haemorrhaging, alcoholic gastritis and cirrhosis of the liver.
Alexander, 50, of Cakes Land, La Canoa Road, Santa Cruz, was found lying motionless on the ground of one of the bedrooms by neighbours who called Emergency Health Services (EHS). When paramedics arrived on the scene, they pronounced Alexander dead and in turn contacted the police.
Homicide officers investigating the matter suspected murder after relatives reported that the woman was being abused.
At Forensic Science Centre yesterday Alexander's husband Richard, 56, said his wife was a heavy drinker. He said she owned a parlour but ran it into the ground as a result of her illness.
He said that his wife would "trust" goods to residents in the area and never receive payment adding that she died without receiving what was owed to her.
Despite this, he said, she was a good woman who he never stopped kissing during their 30-year union.