Yesterday we reported on a shooting between members of the Coast Guard Service and alleged beach combers in North Ambergris Caye that left one man dead. According to authorities, they responded to a shooting incident in the area of Bacalar Chico about 21 ½ miles North of San Pedro Town where they met Coast Guard personnel in the area. About 75 meters from the beach side in the bushes they saw a sawed off 12 gauge pump action shotgun and (6) 12 gauge cartridges. About 25 feet from the shotgun they found the body of 23-year-old Peter Castillo Jr. of Indian Ville Village, Punta Gorda Town lying face up with apparent gunshot wound to his body. Initial investigation revealed that at about 10:48a.m., a team of Coast Guard Personnel comprising of 6 persons were in the area conducting operation when they came across 3 male persons who were armed at the time. They were ordered to drop their weapons and one of the male persons reportedly raised his shotgun and pointed it in their direction where they responded by firing 3 shots in his direction fatally wounding Castillo. Castillo received injuries to the left side of his chest, his right elbow and left upper arm. The shotgun was retrieved and observed to be a 12 gauge Pump Action Shotgun Maverick Model 88 which had a piece of the butt cut off. One M4 Carbine Rifle was also retrieved from Coast Guard personnel for testing. Police investigations continue. Police say they suspect the men are beach combers, also referred to as “playadores” who search the beach for parcels of cocaine that wash up from wet-drops. Authorities say the northern part of Ambergis Caye is a known hot spot for such activity.
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