Gunmen target T&T family again: Mom killed, daughter hurt

(Trinidad Guardian) In the space of three years, Monica “Cris” Gumbs suffered through the murder of her nephew, husband, son-in-law and the shooting of one of her daughters.

But when death came knocking once more on Monday night, it was her turn as she was gunned down outside their Fazal Avenue, Penal home yesterday. Her other daughter Dana, 35, survived with a gunshot wound on her right leg.

Police reports stated that around 10.30 am, Gumbs’ sister, Gail Emmanuel, was at home when she heard several explosions outside. As she walked downstairs to check, she found Dana bleeding in her living room. She then walked to the front house where Gumbs lived and found her sister lying motionless with wounds to the head and upper body.

Crime Scene Investigators gather evidence at the scene of Monica Gumbs’ murder in Penal yesterday.

Penal Police responded along with an ambulance and took Dana to the San Fernando General Hospital. Gumbs, 55, a seamstress, had already died.

Officers from the Homicide Bureau of Investigation, Region Three, including Insp Daryl Corrie and Sgt Randy Ramjag, visited the home and interviewed witnesses and family members.

The T&T Guardian was told that Gumbs and Dana had just arrived at their home when two gunmen ran up to them and began firing. Gumbs tried to get away but was shot, while Dana ran to the house behind. It was alleged that the men were transported by a man from the area in a Nissan March. However, investigators said they could not confirm this information.

A relative said the family was too distraught to speak to reporters. But even as this was being said screams rang out as family members caught sight of undertakers removing Gumbs’ body.

“Why they kill my sister? She did not do anything, she did not kill anybody,” a relative cried out.

Investigators were still working to determine the circumstances of the murder and the motive behind it up to last evening.

In May 2015, Gumbs’ nephew, Roger Romain, 36, a linesman at T&TEC, was gunned down outside the house as he parked his car in the yard. In December 2015, Gumbs’ common-law husband Michael Matthews, 57, was shot to death near their home as he was returning from a parang lime. Back then, Gumbs told the T&T Guardian that Matthews was accused of killing Romain. In July 2016, Gumbs’ daughter, Stacy, 30, survived being shot in the chest and shoulder while driving her beige Mazda 323 along Fazal Avenue. In March 2017, Stacy’s boyfriend, Kevin Fuller, 31, of Palmyra Village, Princes Town, was shot dead along with Terry Edwards, 34, a construction labourer of Wellington Gardens, Debe and Sanjay Mahabir, 42, an offshore worker of Rose Gardens, Debe, at the Runway 69 ‘Shorts’ Bar along Wellington Road, Debe. Fuller, who had previous convictions for firearm and drug-related charges, was said to be the target in a reprisal for Romain’s death. Fuller’s friend, Edwards and Mahabir, were believed to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Romain had no criminal record and was not known to be involved in criminal activities, but relatives had suggested that he was murdered by other relatives. No one was held for any of the murders or shootings.

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