An Arouca woman is crying out for justice after her husband was brutally murdered during a robbery last Friday.
Rhonda St Helaire said her husband Dexter, 60, was killed around 9.45 pm while visiting a relative’s home on Ifill Street, Arouca.
St Helaire said he had gone to the house to change a lock. She said it was his third attempt to assist the relative as he had gone two times before and the man was not at home.
“He had tried three times to go and help the person and the person wasn’t there and he went back again. My philosophy would have been, it’s your lock, I came once and you weren’t there, I am not going back, but he wasn’t like that,” Rhonda said.
While at his relative’s house, Dexter was approached by two young men who started questioning him about where they could buy drugs.
The relative later told Rhonda that Dexter brushed them off. He was trying to leave his cousin’s house minutes later to meet his wife when the men accosted him again.
“The story is that when he came out…his car wasn’t even switched off, because he was just going to come around the corner because I was just around the corner where we could sit and chat,” Rhonda said.
“The relative said he could have heard voices but he knew it was Dexter alone and when he looked he saw that the two fellas were at my husband, I don’t know if they were trying to carjack him, they were there and everything happened, he just heard shots…and the rest is history,” she added.
St Helaire later found out her husband had been robbed of his wallet, which contained approximately $1,000 in cash, his cellphone and his car keys.
Now she is left with only memories of the man she loved since she was a girl.
“My husband was a wonderful person, he was a people’s person, he was a community person, he would be turning 61 this year but he was young at heart. He could reach people at all levels, he was an excellent communicator, he was a person who, if there was division, he would bring harmony,” she said.
The two had been married for seven years after being reunited nine years ago. Videos shared with Guardian Media show the couple dancing at several different events together.
St Helaire said their love for each other was the stuff of fairytales.
“Before he left home that day, he told me hand him two bottles of water, I took the water and came to the window, I threw one down to him and blew him a kiss and he blew back a kiss and I threw the other one and blew him another kiss and he blew one back to me,” she recalled.
She said Dexter’s dream was to help the youths in Arouca get off the streets and find ways to support themselves.
“We would see a lot of youths on the corner so we formed a little company, it wasn’t getting any big contracts but it was a company that would, any little contract that he got, it would pull young people off the street with whatever little skill they had, even if they could just dig some dirt, he would bring them in.”
She believes her community is being terrorised by a network of criminals that have ties to gangs in Port-of-Spain.
“There are criminals with guns who are terrorising people and nothing is being done, they want to tax the shopkeepers in the area, and nobody is going to the police because they are in fear- there is talk about gangs networking from Port-of-Spain, coming into our community- this cannot continue,” she said.
The grieving widow wants justice for her husband.
She said since his murder, friends, relatives and neighbours have been lighting up the streets of Arouca in remembrance of him.
The family had also planned a candlelight vigil for Thursday night.
St Helaire wants the police to step up their game, as she said criminals have become sophisticated in their operations.
“I want them to stop using those archaic systems that they are using to solve crime, they need to match the criminals- if they were probably a ‘lil pow pow’ before, they are not doing that, they are using high powered rifles, they (police) need to employ different methods to solve crime,” she said.
Dexter’s funeral is expected to be held sometime next week.