Hinds: San Fernando Hill death still under probe

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Renee Mitchell –

MINISTER of National Security Fitzgerald Hinds said on Monday that investigations were still ongoing into the tragic death of Corinth teacher Renee Mitchell, 39, who fell to her death at a Carnival fete at San Fernando Hill on January 27.

He was addressing a briefing at his ministry in Port of Spain ,where he and the top brass of the police service, fire service and defence force promised a safe Carnival.

Newsday asked if any conclusion had been reached on Mitchell’s death, given the number of agencies required to monitor the safety of fete venues, such as OSH, fire, police and town planning.

Hinds replied, “For my part, that matter at San Fernando was, is, remains, a very emotive and sensitive issue.

“I think common sense would tell us that investigations are ongoing, and I rather suspect that no conclusions have been arrived at yet and for those reasons, therefore, I think we can set that apart.”

Newsday asked if the January 7 shooting death of Akeil Archer, 26, while erecting vendors’ booths at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port of Spain, was due to a personal grouse or extortion of a business contractor.

Carnival gold commander ACP Kelvern Thompson said investigations were ongoing.

“Our investigations show this was maybe gang-related.

“However, it was not a case of extortion. It was opportunity.

“Given the ongoing (Carnival) activity at the Savannah and other venues which provide seasonal employment for all levels of society, we have added extra layers (of security) and insulated those areas to prevent a recurrence.”

He gave credit to the National Carnival Commission for increasing security there.

“But again, unfortunately, another life lost, but it was not extortion. It was not something to impact on our Carnival.”