PORT OF SPAIN – Missing Waterloo Secondary School student Jesse Beephan, 16, was found dead yesterday in a storm drain located behind the school.
Beephan, who was reported missing by his mother Sharon Bickaroo on Monday night, was said to be fully clothed in his uniform—a white shirt and a pair of grey pants.
His body was found snuggled in a drain that runs parallel to but several metres away from the Waterloo Main Road.
An autopsy done late yesterday revealed he died from blunt force trauma to the head.
Speaking with the T&T Guardian after his return from the Forensic Science Centre in St James last evening, his father Shakar Beephan said his son’s head was bashed in to the back and sides.
“They beat my son to death, because part of his face is gone. I would have to have a closed casket for my son. I really want to know what happen, but they beat my son to death,” he said.
Investigating officers said it was a mystery how Beephan ended up behind the school, but believe his classmates hold the key to what transpired on Monday when he went missing. The T&T Guardian understands police investigators will be interviewing Beephan’s school friends and classmates in the presence of their teachers and their parents/guardians, as well as other students.
This is because police were initially told by Beephan’s friends that they last saw him boarding a vehicle heading out towards St Mary’s Junction. However, after extensive preliminary investigations by officers, they are now of the belief only his friends can say what led to his demise.
One of the investigating officers at the scene yesterday said they are not ruling out the fact that Beephan’s friends may have made a pact to keep his death a secret.
At about 10 am yesterday, relatives and close friends of Beephan’s family continued their search operations, including an expanded search of the bushy area adjacent to the school. They made the horrific discovery shortly before 11 am.
Beephan’s parents were called to the scene shortly afterwards, where they positively identified the body of the elder of their two children.
Bickaroo’s ear-piercing screams echoed throughout the Bank Village area. She was inconsolable and had to be taken away by her husband and another relative. As they passed through a broken wire fence in the school’s perimeter into the school playground, Bickaroo collapsed in grief.
Speaking with the T&T Guardian at her Heliconia Drive, Roystonia, Couva home, Bickaroo said it was a nightmare to her. She said she dropped her two children—Beephan and his 13-year-old sister to school on Monday morning and when she returned minutes to 3 pm, she only found her daughter waiting at their designated waiting area outside the school compound. She said her daughter told her she could not find her sibling.
“We waited on him for a few minutes and then we began checking the school and surrounding establishments, all the restaurants and supermarkets, but he wasn’t there. Four hours we spent looking for him. Eventually, about after 8 pm we went and made an official missing person’s report to the police,” Bickaroo said.
Bickaroo described her son as a video game lover and one who was not a trouble child. “He was a mummy’s boy and very close to everyone in the family. He loved to see about his dogs and was overall a pleasant child. He wasn’t the type to stay out late, disappear and he never ran away from home. This is really a shock because I never thought I would have to bury my son.”
It was being rumoured yesterday that Beephan may have suffered from an epileptic attack and may have fatally damaged himself, but she denied this, saying her son had no such issue.
“No, not at all. My son was a very healthy boy,” she said.
Upon the discovery of Beephan’s body, the teachers called all pupils to their classrooms and supervised them until a decision was made to suspend classes for the rest of the day.
At about 1.35 pm, students from Forms One, Two and Three were allowed to leave while students of Forms Four and Five were kept back in their classes. Those students were addressed by their teachers.