Taxi driver murdered in broad daylight, his van was to be used in a robbery
Three men are in police custody following the daylight execution of a taxi operator in San Pedro Town, Ambergris, Belize. The victim is 42-year-old Jose Rigoberto Beltran, of an Escalante Area address. He was discovered sometime after 10AM on Tuesday April 28th, with a single gunshot wound to the back of the head inside his cab in a bushy alley at the end of Jewfish Street in the San Juan Area.
A neighbor in the area told The San Pedro Sun that shortly around 10AM, they heard a sound like a firecracker but did not see anything strange. The neighbors said that they still decided to call the police, since the station is just a few hundred feet away from the area. One neighbor said that while in the process of calling the police, they saw a dark-skinned male with a team of Coast Guard officials in the area. Despite the fact that he was bleeding from scrapes, Coast Guard officials released the person and it was not until further checks of the area that authorities discovered the van in the bushes.
By the time Scenes of Crime personnel got to process the area almost four hours later, family members of Beltran and colleagues from the various taxi associations on the island gathered in the area. According to the victim’s brother, Carlos Isais Beltran, they both spoke shortly after 9AM before the two left their home to do their usual taxi runs. “I know him as a hardworking person and we had a very good relationship. We are all in shock over this news. He was happy when he left home because he was sending some money for his children who are living in Belmopan. The family is all sad because we were never expecting news like this” said a very broken Carlos Beltran.
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Murdered Taximan Found Dead Inside His Own Vehicle
Residents in the area recall hearing a single gunshot and did not expect to hear the grim news of the body of 42-year-old San Pedro Taximan, Jose Rigoberto Beltran, found inside his own vehicle with one gunshot wound to the back of his head. After experiencing a decrease in criminal activity due to an increace in patrolling, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye was shaken up once again on Tuesday, April 27, 2015.
But as police conducted its investigations, the body of Beltran lay inside the taxi van well after 1p.m. parked lagoon-side, into some shrubberly off the road in the San Juan Area. The body of Beltran was discovered by a Coast Guard unit that was patrolling the lagoon, who were flagged down by a man who spotted the taxi van. The crime scene was just around the corner of the San Pedro Police Department and police believe that it is likely that Beltran was subdued, taken to that spot and killed. Police gained knowledge that the criminals needed his vehicle to conduct a robbery.