Construction worker remanded for killing, burning body of woman

Randolph Reece, 45, has been charged with the capital offence of murder in connection with the death of Shannen Obermullah-Mohamed

Randolph Reece, 45, has been charged with the capital offence of murder in connection with the death of Shannen Obermullah-Mohamed.

Reece was arrested last week after the burnt remains of the 29-year-old woman were discovered after a fire at a construction site was put out.

On Monday, Reece, a construction worker of Parika, East Bank Essequibo (EBE) was arraigned at the Leonora Magistrate’s Court where he was not required to plead to the indictable charge. He was remanded to prison until November 13.

It was previously reported that Shannen was hammered and hacked to death, reportedly by Reece, who is mentally unstable. Her burnt remains were discovered last Tuesday evening in the yard of a house under construction at Parika, EBE.

Police have said they received an anonymous tip about the burnt body at about 22:00h last Tuesday, and upon arrival on the scene, they discovered a burnt skull and torso among the debris near the unfinished concrete structure.

They also found a sledgehammer and crowbar nearby, leading them to suspect that those were the weapons used to commit the heinous crime.

Several persons in the area were questioned, and a neighbour told Police that, at around 10:00h, she had observed a man known to Reece burning wood and other materials in the yard, but she had paid him no mind.

Further investigations revealed that at around 09:00h on the day in question, Shannen had visited the location, and had gone down to the back of the yard, where her home is currently being constructed by the murder accused.

During the day, family members had attempted to contact her, but all calls had gone unanswered, and her whereabouts had been unknown.

However, last week Tuesday evening, a family member had decided to venture down to the back of the yard, and that person observed a fire. They also saw Reece walking away, heading towards the end of the yard, and soon after disappearing in the darkness.

Family members then used buckets of water from a nearby pipe to extinguish the fire, after which they observed what appeared to be a human skull among the debris. As a result, the Police were summoned.

It was also brought to the attention of the ranks that the man is mentally unstable and is known to Shannen’s family. Despite his mental condition, they say, he does quality construction work for the family, and his fees are reasonable.

A postmortem examination conducted on the woman’s charred remains confirmed that she died from blunt trauma to the head, and that she was already dead when her body was set ablaze.

Police are now awaiting DNA testing to confirm her identity. Reece was later arrested and charged with the woman’s murder.