Senior police officer killed while attending church service
Children sleep on the floor of a school turned into a shelter after they were forced to leave their homes in Cite Soleil due to clashes between armed gangs, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Saturday, July 23, 2022. (Photos: AP)

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (CMC) — Gunmen believed to be members of the notorious 400 Mawozo gang shot and killed a senior police officer while he attended service at Assembly of God Church on Sunday.

Media reports have identified the officer as Inspector Réginald Laleau and that his murder followed threats by the gang to execute police officers at the armoured unit of the National Police of Haiti (PNH) whose vehicles, nicknamed by the bandits Men lap fe san, patrols gang-controlled territories in the capital.

Chief of the 400 Mawozo gang, Joseph Wilson, alias Lanmò San jou, had threatened to kill the police officers of one of the armoured vehicles, and later on Sunday there were several clashes and exchanges of fire between the police and members of the gang, causing widespread panic in the area.

Laleau joins the list, along with 25 of his colleagues, of police officers killed by gang members since January, according to Lionel Lazarre, coordinator of the National Union of Haitian Police Officers.

Children forced to leave their homes in Cite Soleil due to clashes between armed gangs, react to a visiting photographer at a school turned into a makeshift shelter in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Saturday.

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