Two men die in separate shootings
Published: September 10, 2012
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ST. THOMAS - The territory added its 42nd and 43rd homicides of 2012 Friday night on St. Thomas.
The two shootings, which police do not think are related, claimed the lives of 30-year-old David Payne and 39-year-old Andre Jules Tanis, according to a press release issued Saturday by V.I. Police spokeswoman Melody Rames. Both cases remain under investigation by V.I. Police major crime detectives.
Police were dispatched to Estate Anna's Retreat about 10:30 p.m. Friday night and found Payne on the ground in front of his residence with multiple gunshot wounds to his body. Emergency medical technicians responding to the call said the victim had no vital signs, and he was pronounced dead at Schneider Hospital.
About 11:45 the same night, police were dispatched to Gamble Gade in Savan, where there were reports of a gunshot victim.
When police arrived they found Tanis, a native of Haiti, injured in the street. He too was taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
The preliminary police investigation revealed Tanis was in the area of Friendly Bar in Savan when several shots were fired at him. He was seen running from the area and later collapsed on Gamble Gade, according to police.
Forensic technicians gathered evidence from both crime scenes, and detectives are following leads to identify suspects. Anyone with information can call detectives at 714-9844 or 714-9805, or the anonymous Crime Stoppers tip line at 1-800-222-8477.
In the press release, St. Thomas-St. John Police Chief Darren Foy denounced the territory's recent gun violence, pledging the department will use all available resources to aggressively address the issue of gun violence.
"I am pleading with the citizens of the Virgin Islands to handle conflicts in a more peaceful manner and to stop the gun violence," he said. "There is no situation so serious that would justify someone taking another man's life."