The family of the man who was “mistaken” by police and shot one week ago is torn over his death and still waiting for answers.
To them, Job Terry Munnings, Jr. was a son, brother, uncle and daddy and to others he was “Mr. Versatile,” the always energetic entertainer, on and off the stage.
Munnings, a budding reggae/rap artist, is known best for his songs, “When I Die” and “Change One Day,” recently relocated to Abaco from Grand Bahama to begin a new chapter in his life.
But it was short lived when he was reportedly shot by police on Wednesday, January 20 while in the community known as The Mudd.
Police would only say last week that the incident occurred around 7:45 p.m. while officers were on “special police operation” and that a 34-year-old male resident of Abaco was shot and pronounced dead on the scene by the local doctor.
But Munnings’ family are angered by his killing and say while they know the matter is under investigation what they have been told to-date by police is not enough.
Up to press time yesterday, The Freeport News was unable to ascertain an update from police on the investigation, despite numerous calls.
His sisters Jacqueline Curry and Faye Williams, two of five, reside in Grand Bahama and say their only brother was a loving person and always loved to spread it around.
The older siblings shared fond memories of the ever-spirited Munnings growing up and say even in their adult years there was never a dull moment with him around.
“He would leave for a long period of time and when you see him again, he would hug you so tight and give wet kisses,” Williams told The Freeport News yesterday.
“He’s a very positive individual to the young people, including his nephews and nieces.”
She said Munnings always encouraged his siblings to build something so that their children would have a bright future.
Williams also reflected on when her brother first told her of the idea of him shooting a music video in a coffin for his first song, “When I die.”
She thought nothing of it, but said she thought it was the funniest thing when he showed her the video on his laptop.
Recalling the lyrics to that song, Williams said he wanted to always be remembered, wanted his family taken care of and promised to meet his listeners on the other side.
“As I think back on it, I told my sister that Job foretold his own death. He said to be happy, throw a p-a-r-t-y,” she said.
Curry said her brother was full of life, loving and always on the go.
She, too, remembers him as a bubbly child who was always thinking of and creating new inventions and because he was so passionate, he loved sharing his ideas.
The protective sister said at times she would have to remind him to keep his ideas to himself.
“Everyone who met and knew Job would remember him by his stage name, ‘Mr. Versatile,'” she said.
Curry, who was in Munnings’ second music video, said she saw her brother lying in and singing in front of a coffin.
“I think somehow he saw it because all of his songs portray his life as he lived it,” she said. “Somehow it all sort of makes sense to us now, even though he died in a tragic way, but he foresaw it and we’re going to see him on the other side.”
She first learned about the shooting that night around 11:00 via a phone call from her niece who lives in Freeport who also learned of it through another one of her nieces in New Providence after seeing it in a post on facebook.
“I couldn’t control myself,” she recalled.
She telephoned her mother in Nassau who was asleep at the time and questioned whether she was playing a trick on her.
Curry said she also contacted the Abaco police station but was unable to retrieve any information.
The next morning, she flew into Abaco and so did her mother and another sister out of Nassau and they met with officer in charge, Inspector Noel Curry at the Abaco Police Station.
But Curry said they were dissatisfied with the outcome.
Additionally, she said, information from residents in Abaco conflicted with what they had been told by local police.
So they then telephoned Police Commissioner Ellison Greenslade and met the following morning in the capital with him, Inspector Curry and Assistant
Commissioner Emrick Seymour, who is in charge of the northern Bahamas District.
“Commissioner Greenslade gave us condolences and said it was a mistaken identity. It was so tragic, even hearing that didn’t bring satisfaction, but it was accepted and the investigation is ongoing,” she said.
In the meantime, her parents are coping as best they can.
“Job is the only boy among five girls. She is taking it one day at a time but she hasn’t accepted it as yet,” Curry said of her mother.
Meanwhile, Curry said she tries to be strong for the rest of them but finds herself in tears when she thinks about her brother.
As for her, she is “ok”.
“You try to be strong, but its hard, it’s very hard.”
Williams said she learned of the shooting from Curry and she and her children searched facebook to see what was being posted, but could not find anything that night.
“It’s a very sad thing that innocent people could just get shoot down and it just swept under the rug or you could say it was a mistake,” she said.
“It’s sad. It’s sad. That is something that really needs to be looked into; not because it’s my brother, but it’s really been going on too long.”
She pointed out that her brother has two children who will never see him again.
“He is gone and now my question is where is this fugitive that you were looking for. You already shoot an innocent person down, where is this man you’ll looking for. Did he get away,” she asked.
“Only the good die young and God has taken the best. That’s how I look at it.”
She is finding some solace in her brother’s death knowing that he touched the lives of many people, but it doesn’t take the pain away.
“It’s a very hard pill to swallow,” she said. “He promised he was coming back. But no one ever expected him to come back in a bag.”
Up to press time, neither Commissioner Greenslade nor ASP Seymour had returned our calls and, according to Inspector Curry, the investigation is now out of his jurisdiction and he referred us to the commissioner or Seymour.
As the family waits for answers they are moving ahead with funeral plans in Grand Bahama on February 9.
By Lededra Marche
Freeport News Editor