Police investigators probing the attack and beating of two Georgetown men at Canal #1 Polder on the West Bank of Demerara, have questioned a number of persons as part of their investigations, but no arrests have been made.
Senior Police sources close to the investigation have reported to News Source that the investigators are conducting a thorough probe.
The two men, Dameon Gordon and Vernon Beckles, have been recounting the ordeal and strongly believe that they were attacked because of their race, while being accused of being thieves.
Both men are afro-Guyanese and the incident took place in a predominantly indo-Guyanese community.
Gordon and Beckles said they were kicked and punched to their faces, while glass bottles were broken on their heads.
A visit to a shop in the community on Sunday night escalated into the attack after the two men were accused of removing the mirrors of a car that was parked on the outside of the shop.
They have denied removing the mirrors from the car, but investigators were told that the owner of the car reported that he “personally saw” one of the men allegedly removing the mirrors from the car and that was when he raised an alarm. Other members of the community came out and started the assault.
The men claimed that it was during the assault that racial slurs were thrown at them even as they attempted to put up a defence. They said they had gone to the area in the company of other friends to be shown the venue of an upcoming event that one of the friends is hosting this weekend. That friend, who is a member of the Guyana Defence Force, lives in the same community.
A senior Police Officer who is familiar with the probe, told News Source this evening, that all efforts are being made to question everyone linked to the incident and others who may have been close by.
The Senior Officer said different versions of the incident are being presented, but he admitted that even if the claims of the men removing the car’s mirrors, are proven to be true, the attack and beating were uncalled for and would also represent the flouting of the law. Investigations are ongoing.
The Ministry of Social Cohesion has called for a thorough Police investigation of the matter.
During a press conference today at his office at the Ministry of the Presidency, Minister of Social Cohesion Dr. George Norton, when asked about the recent incident, said the Administration denounces any form of violence against individuals. The Minister said that whilst the matter in in the hands of the Guyana Police Force, officials of the Ministry will be visiting the community.
The Social Cohesion Ministry’s Strategic Plan, he explained, will address such issues as the aforementioned Canal Number One incident. He recalled that a similar occurrence in the Region Seven community of Agatash was dealt with through an intervention by the Ministry’s officials.
Minister Norton added that he expects Regional Officials to intervene, “with whatever help they and we are willing to provide that help” as they have conducted consultations and training sessions in more than 30 communities across Guyana.