St. Lucian shot dead by cops
Front Page
June 26, 2009
St. Lucian shot dead by cops

Another foreign national has been shot and killed by police, and again, questions are being asked about the circumstances surrounding the incident.{{more}}

Dead is Ernest Albert Marthe, who was shot by police at around 5:15 am on Sunday, June 21st, at Fancy, the northernmost village on mainland St. Vincent.

On May 28th, police shot and killed three men in Vermont, including Barbadian national Dwayne O’Brian, who was wanted in his homeland for murder.

In both cases police claim that they were attacked and fired in self defense.

While in the Vermont incident, the men were said to be armed with a 9mm pistol, police say that Marthe attacked an officer with a cutlass.

Marthe, who is said to be in his early thirties, was a “known marijuana farmer” in the Fanny Mountain, a police report states.

According to the police report, police were at the time conducting a search at a home in Fancy, when Marthe, who was here illegally, attacked the officer in question.

SEARCHLIGHT visited the area and spoke to 16-year-old Hilda Thomas, the mother of Marthe’s five-week old son.

She told SEARCHLIGHT that she was at home when she heard gunshots.

When she came outside, she saw three police officers who said that they had a warrant to search the house.

Thomas said that the officers searched the house and about twenty minutes later, someone came and told her what had happened to Marthe.

“I was going to see what happened, but the police said to go back,” she explained.

Thomas, who dropped out school in fourth form, told SEARCHLIGHT that she knew that Marthe was involved in the drug trade, and knew it was a risk.

“Why they didn’t shoot him somewhere else?” she, however, asked.

While the police report did not state where Marthe was shot, SEARCHLIGHT understands that it was in the area of his neck.

Thomas lives with her grandmother Silvana Jordan, who described Marthe as a good person who “use to give me anything”.

Alston James, who lives a short distance away from Jordan, showed SEARCHLIGHT the blood stains that were in his yard stemming from the incident.

He said he was not at home at the time of the incident but someone came and told him that a man was dead in his place.

It is uncertain which house the police report is indicating that Marthe attacked them from. However, Jordan and Thomas said that the shots they heard were fired before the police began searching their home.

Meanwhile, Thomas told SEARCHLIGHT that Marthe’s family have been in touch with her and have promised to care for her and her young son.

She said that she plans to return to secondary school next school year to finish her education.