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It has happened before. It has happened again.

A murder at a wake for a murder victim.

Troy James, 32, a plumber of Fifth Street Extension, Pranz Gardens, Claxton, was killed when he went to the wake of his friend, who himself was murdered.

Police said that at around 10.30 p.m, on Saturday. James’ killer walked up to him and shot him six times in the chest.

James ran a short distance then collapsed. The father of three died a short distance from where the wake was being held at the home of Anil Sankar, a crab catcher and fisherman, found dead hours earlier. The killer fled the scene.

The body of Sankar, 24, was discovered in a decomposing state near an outhouse by his parents who went in search of him.

Although the body was in an advanced state of decomposition, his family identified him because of a missing front tooth and his right hand that had been mutilated by fireworks in 2006.

Sankar disappeared on November 27, and the family had made a missing person report to the Couva police.

Relatives said that Sankar had been threatened and attacked by three men in November.

Sankar never reported the threat to the police.

“He was a quiet person, he never talked. He never said who threatened him”, his father, Sham Sankar said.

Police are probing whether the two killings were linked since James was one of the last people that Sankar spoke to on the day he went missing.

James’ wife, Judea John, said she called him while he was at work on Saturday to inform him that Sankar’s body was found.

John said her husband went to the wake.

“People were calling his name since he was one of the last persons that talked to him (Sankar) before he went missing. He said he was going to clear his name”, said John.

She said James would at times accompany Sankar on jobs to cut grass.

Sankar’s family said that on the day he went missing he ate his lunch at home and then spoke to James at the gate.

“We thought he was sleeping in his room but when we went to check he wasn’t there. By the next day when he didn’t come home, we found that strange. We called the police and we went to look for him”, said relatives.

Relatives believe that Sankar was killed on the day he went disappeared.

When the gunshots rang out during the wake, his parents remained in their homes.

“I was here grieving when we hear the gunshots. The people in the street scatter, people just start to run and hide. I remained on the couch because I couldn’t take it”, said Sham Sankar.

The autopsies on both men will be performed at the Forensic Sciences Centre, Federation Park, on Monday.

In another incident, Daniel Pacheco, 43, of Radix Village, Mayaro was shot three times when he battled armed bandits at his business place.

At around 9.05 p.m. Pacheco and his wife, Savitri Singh, were in their business Danny’s Burgers and Grill when two men walked in and announced a hold up.

Pacheco, police said was in another room when Singh was forced to hand over $6,000 and $2,000 worth of cigarettes.

The bandits were about to leave when Pacheco emerged from the other room and began to struggle with one of them.

The second bandit fired at Pacheco and he collapsed.

The bandits escaped.

Police said Pacheco was taken to the Mayaro Distrcit Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. The murder toll stands at 425.

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