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St. Croix Man Shot To Death Near The Cool Out Bar in Peter’s Rest Two Hours After Midnight: VIPD

FOUR FRIENDS AND THE FINGER: A man who can’t be identified (left, cap pulled down) stands next to “Naldo Cinco,” “Keenan StackPaper dtn” and Markel Joseph (far right). (Photo: Facebook)

CHRISTIANSTED — A St. Croix man was shot to death about two hours after midnight today near the Cool Out Bar in Peter’s Rest, according to police.

Police Commissioner Delroy Richards Sr. and other sources identified the dead man as Markel “Malik” Joseph, who was 20 years old.

A prominent government executive said via social media that he was playing pocket billiards with Joseph early this morning at the Cool Out Bar when Markel stepped outside for some fresh air — seconds later he was shot, lying on the ground and his friends were trying to resuscitate him by administering CPR to him on the ground.

“This is so sad,” a bar patron recalled. “I was at the bar and saw when he walked outside and then he was dead. He was my competitor in pool and was just so cool! I am haunted by the image I saw last night and pray they catch the jackasses that did this!”

At 3:47 p.m., the Virgin Islands Police Department (VIPD) released official information on Joseph’s death, stating that the 911 Emergency Call Center received a call about “discharging of shots” at 1:58 a.m. today.

When police arrived on the scene they found a man later identified by family members as being Joseph lying on his back in the parking lot of the Cool Out Bar unresponsive, the VIPD said.

Police said that they noticed he had sustained “multiple gunshot wounds to the body.”

Investigators on the scene interviewed people who said that they were in the bar when the incident occurred and only heard gunshots outside. They were unable to provide any other information, according to the VIPD.

Medical personnel on the scene pronounced Joseph dead from gunshot wounds. Morgue attendants transported his body to the Juan F. Luis Hospital morgue.

Investigators from the Criminal Investigations Bureau and Forensic Team canvassed and processed the area, police said.

On social media, Joseph said that he attended Elena Christian Junior High School, St. Croix Central High School and the University of the Virgin Islands (UVI).

The VIPD is asking that if anyone has any information about the death of Joseph that they call police at (340) 778-2211 or the anonymous tip line Crimestoppers USVI at 1-800-222-8477 or 911.

“We can make our community safer for all of us, the information you provide may make the difference,” police said.

SHOT DEAD: Malik Joseph

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The Author

John McCarthy

John McCarthy

John McCarthy is primarily known for his investigative reporting on the U.S. Virgin Islands. A series of reports beginning in the 1990's revealed that there was everything from coliform bacteria to Cryptosporidium in locally-bottled St. Croix drinking water, according to a then-unpublished University of the Virgin Islands sampling. Another report, following Hurricane Hugo in 1989, cited a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confidential overview that said that over 40 percent of the U.S. Virgin Islands public lives below the poverty line. The Virgin Islands Free Press is the only Caribbean news source to regularly incorporate the findings of U.S. Freedom of Information Act requests. John's articles have appeared in the BVI Beacon, St. Croix Avis, San Juan Star and Virgin Islands Daily News. He is the former news director of WSVI-TV Channel 8 on St. Croix.

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