Wed | Jan 16, 2019

Businessman, lay leader killed after church meeting

Published:Saturday | August 11, 2018 | 12:00 AMLivern Barrett/ Senior Gleaner Writer
Crime scene at home of business executive Arnie Francis, who was shot and killed on Thursday.
Police processing information at the home of businessman Arnie Francis, who was murdered on Thursday night.

Nearly a week ago, business executive Arnie Francis was leading praise and worship at the St Andrew church where he was the co-pastor when he led members of the congregation into a song.

"He was singing 'I shall not die, but live and declare the works of the Lord'," Nicholas Stewart, the other co-pastor, recounted yesterday.

Francis, who was the general manager of Alliance Finance Limited, was shot four times after he and his wife were surprised by a lone gunman at their home in Mona, St Andrew, on Thursday night, the police have confirmed. He died while undergoing treatment at hospital.

His wife suffered a gunshot wound to the knee and was inconsolable after learning of her husband's death, relatives told The Gleaner.

According to reports, Francis and his wife arrived home and she got out of the car to open the gate when the gunman opened fire before escaping.

Yesterday, distraught relatives, friends, and colleagues converged on the home to offer support even as police investigators searched for clues that would help them determine what led to the deadly attack.

Employees at Alliance Finance declined to comment.




Stewart recounted seeing Francis at church minutes before the shooting. "He was at mens' meeting ... he was in a good mood. We were having a discussion and he was participating in the discussion," he said.

"When I got home, I heard my wife say we should pray for him [Francis]. I was wondering why because I just left the man at church, only to find out that he was brutally attacked," he added.

Stewart described the late Alliance Finance boss as a "good man" and struggled to make sense of the killing. "Right now, me can't understand. In all honesty, I don't know what this is because this is one of the persons who you would like to have more of in your country," he said.