Kent Carter, the first vice president of Virginia’s Arlington NAACP branch, had no idea that his birthday celebration in the Turks and Caicos Islands would be his last birthday celebration. Carter was the victim of what is officially being called an “indiscriminate [incident] of harm and misery while the popular civil rights advocate visited the island with his girlfriend to celebrate his 40th birthday.
The British territory’s police commissioner, Trevor Botting said in a statement that a band of “armed criminals” chased and ambushed while traveling back from an island excursion on Sunday, Oct. 2 in a vehicle with local business personnel along with Carter and his girlfriend. The attackers then “proceeded to indiscriminately shoot into the vehicle,” Botting said, killing one local employee in addition to Carter. The NAACP official’s girlfriend sustained minor injuries and law enforcement is reporting that one of the alleged attackers was later killed by police.
Botting explained the attack as one “carried out by armed gang members who act without conscience, who have no regard for life, and who are hellbent on causing indiscriminate harm and misery.” He also said in a public statement that the Caribbean hot spot has seen a rise in violent crime as several other violent attacks occurred over the first weekend of October. Carter was murdered on October 2.
Julius D. “J.D.” Spain Sr., president of the Arlington, VA NAACP talked about the high esteem he held the beloved activist in:
“He was a servant leader. [Carter] was one who didn’t ask for anything in return, but did it because he knew it had to be done. His impact in our community and his character and trustworthiness and judgment were impeccable. He’s one of those silent but very effective leaders. … No one can speak ill will of Kent. He was just a very warmhearted individual.”