Young artist gunned down Print E-mail
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Thursday, 12 October 2017 00:00

Justin Hyde, a 22-year-old man living in the Jane Usher Boulevard area, who had a troubled past, was shot and killed over the long weekend.

It happened at around 9:16 p.m. on Monday, October 9, 2017, at the corner of Curl Thompson and Levi Slusher Streets. Police say that he and 2 other men were riding on separate bicycles. They were only a few blocks away from his house, and it was close enough that his family heard the sound of gunshots in the distance. They were concerned about the incident, but they later got the very bad news that the victim in that shooting was Hyde. He was the only person injured in the shooting, and one of the bullets injured him to the back.

He was rushed to the KHMH, but he died a little less than an hour later, while he was undergoing medical treatment. His family says that he suffered internal bleeding, as a consequence of the gunshot injury.

Police have not granted any comments, and it is not known why he was shot, but Hyde began catching their attention back when he was 19 years-old. He has been charged for 2 high profile incidents. The first was a very dangerous and brazen shooting from April of 2015. A family, including small children, was at their Curl Thompson Street home when a gunman barged into their house and opened fire on them. The female homeowner, a mother, was injured 6 times to the leg in that shooting, a young man ended up getting shot in the jaw and hand. The investigators acted swiftly, and decisively to charge him with 2 counts of attempted murder, 2 counts of dangerous harm, and 2 counts of use of deadly means of harm.

Police did not follow through, and Hyde ended up being freed the first time around because there was no serious prosecution of those charges. In 2016, those same charges were brought against him once again.

Also in 2016, he was charged with 2 other men for the separate offense of use of deadly means of harm. Police say that he was in a getaway car with several persons which were fleeing the scene of a shooting. During their escape, someone from that vehicle fired shots at Assistant Police Commissioner Chester Williams.

But, while he had those very serious brushes with the law, those closest to him say that he had potential, with very little opportunities as a youth living in Belize City’s Southside. Hyde is a graduate of Saint John’s College. Shortly after finishing high school, he attempted to join the police department, following after 2 of his brothers. He completed all the tests required to become a recruit, but during the screening process, he was never called up to become part of that intake. It is believed that he was disqualified to become an officer because his elder brother, Troy Hyde, was already in jail awaiting trial for the murder of Kareem “Robbery” Lopez.

He also had a talent for music, and expressed himself as rapper. Along with other musically talented youths from his neighborhood, he formed the group called, All God’s Sons. Hyde released several songs with accompanying music videos, and the lyrical content focused on what could be interpreted as his own realities. His friends and family say that police harassment was a constant in his life due to being labelled as a trouble maker. He was the father of 4 children, ages 3 years and younger, and he reportedly did not keep them around him because he regularly had to struggle with police patrol teams, which were allegedly brutal in their approach to him and his friends.

His family says that he tried to stay away from the street life, but like other young men in the neighborhood, he was pulled into it, as if giving up on escaping.