One bandit is dead, while his alleged accomplices- one of whom is said to be an employee attached to Republic Bank Limited- are now injured and being treated at the Georgetown Public Hospital following an exchange of gunfire early Tuesday morning during an attempted robbery on Republic Bank Limited on Water Street, Georgetown.
Dead is 24-year-old Elton Wray, also known as “Peas” an agronomy graduate who lived in Eccles, East Bank Demerara and worked as a representative of National Agricultural Research & Extension Institute (NAREI).
Inews understands that Wray had been studying in China for several years and only returned to Guyana recently.
His accomplices were identified as Republic Bank employee, Jamal Haynes, 24, of Norton Street, Georgetown and Jemel Douglas, 24 of Mocha, East Bank Demerara.
Douglas received one gunshot wound to his right arm and Haynes is being treated after being shot three times- once to each of his thighs and once to his genital area.
Based on information received, the incident occurred at around 07:30hrs.
Crime Chief, Wendell Blanhum told Inews that the three men were transported to the scene in a vehicle which was reportedly hijacked on Monday night.
The trio entered the ATM door attached to the bank and broke the adjoining door in order to gain access to the inside of the building.
Based on information received, during the robbery attempt the employees who were on duty at the time began to panic as the three bandits fired shots at the security personnel.
The exchange of gunfire lasted for several minutes until Haynes grabbed one of the bank employees as a hostage and escaped the building running towards the arcade located south of the bank.
However, he was tailed, subsequently shot and apprehended.
Wray reportedly managed to flee the bank and ran into a cook shop located near the arcade with law enforcement officials at his heels.
He reportedly ran into the kitchen of the same business and pretended to be a cook but employees at that entity raised an alarm and he was subsequently shot, once to his chest, before being apprehended.
Inews understands that the third accomplice was arrested as he was exiting the bank.
The injured perpetrators were rushed to the Georgetown Public Hospital where Wray succumbed while receiving treatment.
Republic Bank Limited, in a statement said that the “unsuccessful”robbery attempt occurred as staff were making their way into the branch.
The bank’s Managing Director, Richard Sammy said that “our greatest concern at this point rests upon the safety and well-being of our staff and customers. We have initiated trauma assistance processes for staff and shall continue to work with law enforcement officials in their investigations.”
Further gratitude was extended to the police and the private security personnel (Professional Guard Services) for their prompt response in preventing the situation from escalating further.
The Water Street location will be closed to customers until further notice.
Investigations are ongoing. (Ramona Luthi)