The head of Haiti’s National Police Academy was shot to death over the weekend in the Pétion-Ville neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. Haitian police confirmed the killing of Harrington Rigaud in an attack that also resulted in the kidnapping of the police director’s driver.

According to Associated Press, Rigaud, 50, was shot inside an official police vehicle just before he was about to step out and enter the School of The Magistrature where the director teaches. The school is right next to the police academy. A video that has been making its rounds on social media showed Rigaud’s body covered in blood while lying on the ground. The assailants fled the scene on board Rigaud’s vehicle and took his driver with them. Rigaud had been planning for the graduation ceremony of the fifth cohort of police commissioners prior to the attack.

A spokesperson for the police, Garry Desrosiers could not confirm who was behind the attack, although he said such violence is nothing out of the ordinary in the capital city where gangs are known to dominate and control 60% of the city's capital. Attacks against law enforcement and official buildings have been a rampant occurrence in this nation that has been grappling with gang violence even as it is steeped in crisis with the aftermath of a cholera crisis, a migratory exodus and Haitians suffering from malnutrition. Following the assassination of Haitian President Jovenel Moise last year, the Caribbean nation was thrust into even more chaos. 

In September, notorious gang leader Jimmy “Barbecue” Cherizier of the G9 coalition, took control of a fuel depot which left the nation paralyzed for nearly two months. Police were able to break up the blockade early this month and regain control of the Varreux terminal. However, Cherizier made it seem that he had allowed this to happen. 

“Once again, the drivers and employees of the Varreux terminal can come down without fear,” Cherizer announced on the first week of November. 

“We’ve decided among us ... to allow the gas to be released.” Police reports otherwise said they had confronted the gang which resulted in heavy shooting between police and armed gang members. 

Haitians work in Port-au-Prince on October 29, 2022, one day after gunmen assassinated former presidential candidate Eric Jean Baptiste Representation image. Photo by Richard Pierrin/AFP via Getty Images