Military: Shot officer was not involved in high-level investigations

Friday, March 31, 2017 - 09:45

The military is denying claims that the soldier who died from a gunshot wound at Camp Cumuto, was involved in an investigation into photos that were made public last year, of the Attorney General's children holding weapons at an army base.

In a press release issued yesterday afternoon, the Regiment’s Public Affairs Unit said it was greatly concerned by inaccuracies over a link to the high-profile investigation and Samaroo’s death on Thursday being circulated on social media web sites.

“The acting Commanding Officer of the T&T Regiment Dexter Francis condemns the false allegations of involvement by Warrant Officer Class Two Omar Samaroo in an ongoing high profile case or being a member of a Board of Inquiry assembled to carry out any investigation of that nature,” the release said.

Samaroo, 47, who served in the Defence Force for over 27 years, was found with a gunshot wound to his head in his quarters at the Regiment’s Camp Cumuto base in Wallerfield that morning. He was taken to the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex in Mt Hope where he died later that night. Homicide detectives believe that he committed suicide.

“These inaccuracies are having the effect of unfairly tarnishing the image of warrant officer Samaroo and the Regiment by extension. The Regiment laments this series of unfortunate events,” the release said.

The release also stated that the irresponsible behaviour would affect current investigations.

“These allegations are baseless and are a misrepresentation of the highly distinguished career of WO2 Samaroo. WO2 Samaroo served his country with distinction as a member of the Regiment for the past 27 years and had an unblemished record up to the moment of his untimely passing,” the release said.

The controversy with the photographs arose in October last year after Opposition MP Dr Roodal Moonilal presented them during a Parliamentary debate.

The children were later identified as Al-Rawi’s by Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, who heavily criticised the unidentified soldiers who leaked the images taken during a private security briefing at the Camp Cumuto base.

Samaroo will be awarded full military rites with his funeral scheduled for tomorrow morning.