18 Nov 2007

When a story changes

Regular readers of my blog may know that I comment on happenings I see in the media, occasionally airing my thoughts on other sundry items. My main link to Trinidad and Tobago is the newpapers I read online. Now, while I may be incorrect in the facts of any incident as it happened, I only comment on what has already been reported. Mistakes in the news then would also be mine.

Since reported news gets twisted as the stories progress down a 'timeline', I have resorted to keeping track of the successive articles on Sheldon Des Vignes. Sheldon is the victim of a murderous shot to the head, by an out of control rampaging duncey police officer.

Stories that got twisted previously resulted in the freeing of these dunceys by the courts, for example, the duncey coast guard mechanic who shot Shazard Mohammed, or that Caton youth in Point Fortin.

The original story on Sheldon was that he intervened when he saw police beating up on a young relative for wearing camouflage pants. Apparently wearing camouflage pants is illegal for some people in Trinidad.

Anyway, the first reports were that one police officer was so incensed at Sheldon for jumping into what was clearly police business, he put Sheldon in a headlock, dragged him into a yard, and then put his police issued firearm against the head and pulled the trigger at close range, all the while shouting expletives.

It is a sad denunciation of the duncey police service when I say I can actually see that happening, given the bullish and brutish nature of the personnel recruited.

Today's Express gives a twist in the tail, coming from Sheldon's mother.
"The police was firing shots wild like he was mad or drunk. He meet the relative outside the road and started to tap him up out there because he wanted him to take off the pants. The police drag the boy down here in the yard not knowing that he lives right here. He started to shoot off his gun and Sheldon get shot by a stray bullet."
Another scenario I can readily envision. However, if this second story is true, the charge against this duncey dropped from murder, to manslaughter, (Trinidad does not have degrees of murderous intent). One wonders as well why the duncey has not been suspended pending investigations. No mention of that item in the news.

The duncey caused the death by his careless actions, rather than willful intent. Of course, the issue of whether she was really there and witnessed this herself, or whether she is commenting on what others saw is yet to be established. In the meantime, I continue to monitor how the story changes.