POLICE are investigating the circumstances surrounding the deaths of 25-year-old Paishnarine ‘Ritchie’ Hansraj and 34-year-old Justin Teixeira who were found motionless inside a car at the Marriott Hotel parking lot in Kingston, Georgetown, early Saturday.
And officials at the Guyana Forensic Laboratory have determined that the “white hard substance” which was found in the back seat of the car tested negative for the presence of narcotics.
Crime Chief Wendell Blanhum told online news outlet, the News Room, that officials at the Forensic Laboratory believe that the substance may be sodium cyanide, which is lethal.
However, that is yet to be confirmed as investigators have to send the samples to be tested overseas.
“Officials from the Guyana Forensic Laboratory have indicated to investigators that they suspect the substances may be sodium cyanide which is lethal to human beings in small quantities. However, this suspicion cannot be confirmed by the Officials because the laboratory doesn’t possess the capability to do such testing.
“As a consequence, the Guyana Police Force will resort to sending the samples to an overseas laboratory for further testing,” the Crime Chief told the news agency.
Sodium cyanide is a poisonous compound; it is a white, water-soluble solid. Cyanide has a high affinity for metals, which leads to the high toxicity of this salt.
It is believed that both men took their lives. The police, in a statement, reported that investigators are reviewing CCTV footage in an effort to determine the circumstances leading to the deaths of the young men.
According to the police, investigators were told by a 28-year-old employee of the Marriott Hotel that he received a telephone call from Teixeira’s 60-year-old mother at around 23:30hrs that her son was having a seizure. The mother asked if someone can check on him.
The hotel employee said he immediately dispatched another employee to check on Teixeira who was a guest at the hotel when it was discovered that the room he was staying in on the sixth floor was empty.
The employee then went, just after midnight, to Teixeira’s black Vezel motorcar (PAC 2607) in the parking lot where he observed Teixeira sitting in the driver’s seat, and all the windows of the vehicle were halfway down.
The employee said he opened the front passenger door and discovered Hansraj sitting in a crunch-like position. Both Teixeira and Hansraj appeared to be motionless.
The employee immediately called 911 and the ambulance with EMT arrived; both men were pronounced dead at the scene.
Police confirmed that no marks of violence were seen on the exposed parts of the bodies. The bodies were escorted to the Memorial Garden Funeral Home awaiting an autopsy.
Teixeira was a flight attendant attached to American Airlines and lived at Republic Park, East Bank Demerara. Hansraj is known for his singing and was slated to get engaged next month. He resided at Hague, West Coast Demerara and was the only son of his parents.
Police are also examining the Facebook accounts of both young men.
“And their last posts which were made approximately 8 to 15 hours ago appeared to be of some investigative value,” the Crime Chief was quoted by the News Room as saying.
Hansraj’s last post on Facebook was made just hours ago and it stated: “I hope the world find peace today I love you all!
Teixeira wrote on his page: “Life is like a coin. You can spend it any way you wish, but you only spend it once.”