Police yesterday said that a Sisters Village, East Bank Berbice man has confessed to raping missing 13-year-old Leonard Archibald and then disposing of his body in the Berbice River.
Commander of ‘B’ Division Linden Alves last evening confirmed the alleged confession to Stabroek News. He said that the suspect confessed to sodomising the teen, after which he dumped his unconscious body into the Berbice River along with his bicycle. The bicycle was recovered a short distance behind a house frequented by the suspect. Residents had reported hearing screams from the house.
Archibald, of Lot 51 Brothers Village, East Bank Berbice, went missing on Sunday afternoon after he left home to pick up two of his sisters from a birthday party in a nearby village. However, the lad never returned home. He was last spotted riding a bicycle on the Sisters Village, East Bank Berbice Public Road.
Police had held two men, both in their twenties, from Sisters Village, East Bank Berbice in connection with the child’s disappearance.
Stabroek News was previously told that one of the men is known for interfering with teen boys in the area.
The man, who is known as a drug addict in the community, and his friend, at whose house he would often hang out during the day, were placed under arrest after police launched the investigation into Archibald’s disappearance.
After several searches in the backlands, house lots and other areas in East Bank Berbice yielded nothing, search parties comprising police and residents decided to venture to the Berbice River yesterday. It was during that search that the teen’s bicycle was discovered some thirty feet from the house where the two men usually hang out. It is located in Sisters Village, four house lots away from the Sisters Police Station.
Alves visited the relatives of the teen yesterday and he reassured them that the police would continue to work along with them.
In an interview after the visit, he told reporters that since the bicycle the teen was last spotted riding was discovered in the river, he had since “activated the marine patrol to run the river and check on the banks in case the child was supposedly thrown into the river.” “The bicycle was discovered [in the river] direct behind the house and where it was alleged that persons in the community would have heard screaming from,” he disclosed.
After seeing her son’s bicycle in the compound of the Sisters Police Station, Abigail Archibald sat in a nearby bus shed and quietly broke into tears.
The woman sat motionless for close to two hours gazing into the sky and speaking to no one. The teen’s older brother, Orin Archibald, had previously told Stabroek News, that Leonard and his sisters left the birthday party together. However, Leonard rode up the road, leaving his sisters.
However, to everyone’s surprise, Leonard’s sisters arrived home before him. “Them ask where he dey and the mother say he nah reach home, and then we send we next brother to look for he, and he nah see he nowhere from the road,” he had related.