Third reported gun suicide in a week
...businessman's son shoots himself in head
Guyana Chronicle
January 6, 2002

THE son of a popular Sheriff Street, Georgetown businessman yesterday died after he shot himself in the head - the third reported gun suicide in a week in the city.

Shawn Shim, 22, reportedly shot himself with his father's handgun just before noon and was pronounced dead on arrival at the Georgetown Hospital.

Family members said they believe the suicide was prompted by problems he was having with his lover.

Shawn suffered a broken leg in a motorcycle accident near the St. George's Cathedral late last year. The leg was still in cast and he was still moving around on a pair of crutches, relatives said.

Some relatives who knew about the problems he had, concluded that the accident was also an attempted suicide because they found that it had occurred under unusual circumstances. Shawn was known to be a very good motorcycle rider.

His father Leonard Shim, who owns Tennessee Motorcycle Spares and the Tennessee Nightclub, said his son had been showing suicide tendencies and out of caution he had always kept his licensed firearm away from him. However, the young man yesterday managed to find the gun and killed himself.

Shim said he last spoke to his son yesterday morning, trying to comfort him after he appeared to be distressed, assuming that the injured leg was bothering him.

"I told him this morning that you only got two more weeks in the cast. As soon as my back turn and I went downstairs he took the gun and did it", he recalled.

Shawn, also a qualified pilot, was known to be quiet and easygoing. But his father said that over many weeks he had been acting unusually.

"He mans the motor spares section in the business and for the past three weeks I suspected there was a problem. He goes to bed early, comes over early and he sleeps all day, so something tell me that something was wrong with him."

Shim said he began to investigate and realised there was a domestic problem.

"When we tried to find out from him piece by piece what was going wrong with his life, he once assured us that he had wiped away those illusions about his love life saying that everything is alright now and he is finished with that", he said.

Early on Thursday morning, a hunter who relatives said was deeply frustrated over a $1.2M business transaction involving a 4x4 vehicle, locked himself in his bedroom and shot himself in the head.

Relatives said they climbed over the wall of the room and found Wesley Shaw, 55, dead in his room at 153 Middle Road, La Penitence, Georgetown. Family members said the father of three hunted wild animals in the interior and had bought the 4x4 for hunting trips.

According to relatives, Shaw about eight months ago purchased the 4x4 pick-up from a man and paid in cash.

But all efforts, including legal action, to get the man to transfer the documents for the vehicle to Shaw's name failed, they said.

And on Old Year's Night, veteran sports administrator Derek Whitehead, was found with gunshot wounds in his head, slumped over the steering wheel of his car in front of a city funeral home.

Whitehead, 71, reportedly took his own life.