Police hunting Berbice man who set house on fire after failing in bid to kill ex-wife

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…woman says she is living in fear until he is caught

Police are on the hunt for a man from Babu Jaan, Port Mourant, Corentyne Berbice who on Wednesday evening tried to kill his ex-wife using a knife, a piece of wood, and a broken glass, before allegedly setting fire to a house, reducing it to rubble.

What remains of the safe house that the woman was residing in following the fire

Forty-seven-year-old Owamawattie Alves, also called Ann, was rushed to the Port Mourant Hospital after the near-death experience.

Displaying her injuries, the mother of four said that after walking away from the 28-year-old relationship two years ago, her 62-year-old ex-husband, of Rose Hall Town, has been stalking her.

According to Alves, the relationship was very abusive, and she decided in 2016 to put an end to it after her husband was jailed for two years for abuse perpetrated against her.

She said that ever since his release from prison, he has been threatening to kill her.

She related that on Saturday last, while she was at the Port Mourant Market, he approached her with a cutlass and threatened to end her life, but she was able to make good her escape and report the incident to the Police.

The man was arrested on Monday, and was expected to be placed before the court on Thursday. However, he was released from Police custody on Wednesday.

The woman said that on Wednesday evening, at about 19:00h, as she was walking up the stairs of her home, she heard someone moving in the house, but thought it was her daughter.

She then realised that it was her ex-husband, and the two ended up in a scuffle during which the kitchen cabinet fell, alerting her daughter, who tried to stop her father’s advances.

Alves said her ex-husband picked up a door bar and hit her in the head, but her teenage daughter then grabbed the door bar away from. The man then picked up a bottle and hit her again in the head. After the bottle broke, he allegedly attempted to cut her throat, but she was able to hold him off, and received only a cut to her chin.

She said the man then drew a knife, but his daughter held on to the blade, and was cut as she tried to escape.

The woman was rescued by villagers as she ran out of the house, and the Police were contacted. However, before the Police arrived, the suspect made his way into the nearby bushes.

The woman and her 17-year-old daughter had been living in the three-bedroom house for the past three months, after the owner, Mahindra Mangroo, allowed them a place to stay.

She and her daughter went to the Whim Police Station to report the incident, and upon seeing the two women covered in blood and with torn clothing arriving at the station, most of the officers left in the patrol vehicle.

The lone constable who remained could not have done much. He called a senior officer, who then instructed that the patrol return and take the women to the hospital.

The woman said that after she left the hospital, she and her daughter, who is seven months pregnant, were advised not to sleep in the house, so she took her youngest daughter to another daughter’s home to spend the night. However, a few minutes later, the Police informed her that the home she was staying in was on fire.

She said she has lost all her belongings, while her daughter has also lost all the clothing she had purchased for her unborn child.

She says she is now living in fear until her ex-husband is caught. (Andrew Carmichael)

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