Constantly reminded of the rampant crime situation via social media, the family of PH driver Brian Hackett was always concerned about his safety.
Hackett, however, fearlessly worked his car for hire for more than 20 years to provide for his family.
Unfortunately, around 12.30 am yesterday the father of five was hijacked, robbed and shot to death by two passengers in Ste Madeleine. His killers escaped in his silver-grey Nissan Tiida. Hackett, 50, also known as Biggy worked the San Fernando to Princes Town route. Police said 12.30 am he picked up two men in Princes Town and was heading towards San Fernando.
Upon reaching near a fruit stall along the M1 Ring Road, near Daisy Road, the men pointed a gun at him and ordered him to stop. Hackett tried to fight off the men and was shot several times.
An off duty municipal police officer was passing in his vehicle when he saw the commotion and drove to the nearby Ste Madeleine Police Station to get help. However, by the time the police arrived on the scene the men had already escaped in the driver’s Nissan Tiida. Hackett’s body was found on the side of the road. When Guardian visited his Marabella home where he lived with wife and five children ages ranging from 12 to 25 years old, relatives were in a state of disbelief.
“This is the same thing (crime) I see on Facebook not knowing that it would hit home,” said his 21 year old daughter who wished not to be named. She said her father was a hard worker and would not have given up his money or the vehicle without a fight. The vehicle belonged to their mom. Given the crime situation, she said they were concerned for his safety, but he was more concerned about earning an income. She recalled that a few years ago he was robbed in Marabella. “He was very sceptical about who he would pick up.” While she felt the perpetrators might never be caught, she said, “But, if we do get justice, I will say thank God.”
She also called on the authorities to enforce the death penalty. “When you find them is one thing and then the lawyers helping them. You don’t really get justice. So criminals have more rights than the law abiding citizens.”
An autopsy is expected to be performed today at the Forensic Science Centre, Port of Spain. Up to yesterday afternoon the killers were not arrested and the car had not been found. Investigations are continuing.