Autopsy reveals Berbice teen died by drowning and blunt trauma to head

DEAD: Melissa Soman
DEAD: Melissa Soman

A postmortem examination (PME) conducted on Monday by Government Pathologist, Dr Nehaul Singh, revealed that 17-year-old Melissa Soman called “Lisa,” whose body was fished out of the Berbice River last week died as a result of drowning, compounded by blunt trauma to the head.

The body of 17-year-old Melissa Soman called “Lisa,” of 58 Stanleytown, New Amsterdam Berbice, Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne), was found floating in the vicinity of Gateroy, some 50 miles up the Berbice River about 16 hours after she went missing and was feared drowned.

Soman had left her Stanleytown home in March to spend time with her boyfriend and returned briefly for the funeral of her boyfriend’s mother in May.

She had left her two-year-old son with her parents.

The girl’s 22-year-old boyfriend had confessed that an argument over infidelity led to him beating her before she plunged overboard to escape his wrath.

Her boyfriend’s uncle, who was the captain of the boat from which the teen jumped, had told investigators that Soman said she and her boyfriend were having problems, and she plunged overboard. He claimed that he too plunged overboard to save her, but that proved futile.

Meanwhile, the teen’s mother, Shondell Cobena, said her daughter was living with her boyfriend at DeVelt.

She revealed that her daughter was pregnant with her second child.

Police on Sunday took Adams and his uncle back to the scene where they were able to obtain further details about the incident.

The girl’s boyfriend, along with his uncle, is currently in police custody as lawmen await advice from the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) to determine the way forward.

Meanwhile, the Humanitarian Mission Guyana Inc has come forward to assist with Soman’s burial, which is slated for Friday.