Two Haitian-Americans Detained as Suspects in the Assassination of Haitian President Moise!
The turmoil surrounding the assassination of Haitian President Jovenel Moise early Wednesday morning continues to swell. Earlier we reported that several of the suspects had been killed overnight and now, we have more details surrounding those who were taken alive.
Two men believed to be Haitian Americans — one of them purportedly a former bodyguard at the Canadian Embassy in Port au Prince — have been arrested in connection with the assassination of Haiti’s president, Haitian officials said Thursday.
James Solages and Joseph Vincent were among 17 suspects detained in the brazen killing of President Jovenel Moïse by gunmen at his home in the pre-dawn hours Wednesday. Fifteen of them are from Colombia, according to Léon Charles, chief of Haiti’s National Police. He added that three other suspects were killed by police and eight others are on the run. Charles had earlier said seven were killed.
“We are going to bring them to justice,” he said as the 17 suspects sat handcuffed on the floor during a press conference Thursday night.
The oldest suspect is 55 and the youngest, Solages, is 35, according to a document shared by Mathias Pierre, Haiti’s minister of elections.
He would not provide additional details about Solages’ background, nor provide the name of the second Haitian American. The U.S. State Department said it was aware of reports that Haitian Americans were in custody but could not confirm or comment.
Solages described himself as a “certified diplomatic agent,” an advocate for children and budding politician on a website for a charity he established in 2019 in south Florida to assist residents.
On his bio page for the charity, Solages said he previously worked as a bodyguard at the Canadian Embassy in Haiti. The Canadian Embassy didn’t immediately comment; calls to the foundation and Solages’ associates at the charity either did not go through or weren’t answered.
There are different versions of the story of the night President Moise was assassinated that has the country torn. Journalists in the area have released their theories that clash with those given by their government. While everything has been wildly speculated, not everyone was buying the government’s description of the attack.
When Haitian journalist Robenson Geffrard, who writes for a local newspaper and has a radio show, tweeted a report on the police chief’s comments, he drew a flood of responses expressing skepticism. Many wondered how the sophisticated attackers described by police could penetrate Moïse’s home, security detail and panic room and then escape unharmed but were then caught without planning a successful getaway. This makes absolutely no sense to anyone.
Meanwhile, a Haitian judge involved in the investigation said that Moïse was shot a dozen times and his office and bedroom were ransacked, according to the Haitian newspaper Le Nouvelliste. It quoted Judge Carl Henry Destin as saying investigators found 5.56 and 7.62 mm cartridges between the gatehouse and inside the house.
Moïse’s daughter, Jomarlie Jovenel, hid in her brother’s bedroom during the attack, he said, and a maid and another worker were tied up by the attackers.
Moise's wife, Martine Moise who was also shot in the attack, is in critical condition in a Miami hospital and has not released a statement.
This attack has left the country somewhat leaderless and full of tension. Keep praying for Haiti.