Undertakers remove the body of prison officer Stephon Richardson (INSET), who was gunned down in front of the Mt Pleasant London Baptist Church in Princes Town yesterday.

[email protected]

A prison officer was one of two people killed in separate incidents yesterday, pushing the murder count to 312.

Police said prison officer Stephon Richardson, 28, of Indian Walk, Moruga, was outside the Mt Pleasant London Baptist Church along the Moruga Road, Third Company, Princes Town, around 7.30 pm when he was attacked.

Details are sketchy but police say residents heard gunshots ringing out and a short time later, they walked out and saw Richardson bleeding on the sidewalk next to a Nissan Tiida sedan.

Princes Town CID responded along with an ambulance but Richardson, who was hit several times, was already dead. Southern Division Task Force swept the area for possible suspects but no one was held up to press time.

Investigators are hoping that witnesses come forward, as there was no information about how the shooting took place. Richardson was the second prison officer killed in recent weeks.

On September 19, prison officer Sherwin Francis, 48, was killed by three men who knocked on the door of his Fossobianco Drive, Oasis Greens, Chaguanas home, before they shot him several times when he opened it.

Francis was attached to the Remand Yard at Golden Grove, Arouca, and it was believed the killing was a hit called from inside the prison and related to hunger strikes following allegations of the abuse of a “high-profile” prisoner by prison and police officers.

Police are also investigating the killing of a 34-year-old Sangre Grande labourer Parris Maharaj yesterday.

Police said Maharaj, of Road 8, Jacob Coat Circular, North Eastern Settlement, was at his neighbour’s home when the incident happened. Maharaj was reportedly involved in a conversation with his neighbour about the Budget, which is carded for today, in an open shed.

During the conversation, a man known to them walked up, greeted them casually and suddenly drew a firearm from a side bag he was carrying and shot Maharaj in his head. The attacker also threatened the other person before escaping on foot in the nearby forested area.

A report was made to the 999 Command Centre 999 and police officers led by ASP Seecharan, Cpl Guy, PC Lezama and other officers responded. Officers from Arouca Homicide Bureau Region II, led by W/Sgt Sylvester, also responded to the scene.

The scene was processed and photographed by CSI officer WPC Samgooray and PC Guerra and officers found one spent 9mm casing.

District Medical Officer Dr Trim viewed the body and ordered its removal to Sangre Grande Hospital Mortuary, from where it will be taken to the Forensic Science Centre, St James, for a post mortem.

The killing of Maharaj pushed the murder tally to 311 for the year.

WPC Jacob, of Arouca Homicide Bureau Region II is continuing investigations.