Constable Anthony Blackman was on Thursday placed in the witness box before City Magistrate Judy Latchman as he testified under oath in the ongoing Preliminary Inquiry (PI) in connection with the gruesome Emancipation Day murder of Orin David Malik.
Howard “Spleen” Rambarose, Jermaine “Smokey” Jeffers, Negus Lamaizon and Samuel McIntyre were earlier this year charged with for the alleged and unlawful killing of Malik, during an altercation stemming from the payment of debts. The deceased man was reportedly riddled with bullets by his former acquaintances and was pronounced dead on arrival at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC).
However, on March 30, 2017, Magistrate Dylon Bess discharged the matter against Lamizon and McIntyre owing to insufficient evidence, as he declared that the prosecution had failed to establish a prima facie case against the men in order to commit them to stand trial at the High Court.
Bess pronounced that the essential elements of murder were not proved, and that none of the twelve witnesses could positively identify the two accused individuals as the persons who had shot the deceased, and thus it could not be inferred that Malik had died as a result of injuries inflicted upon him by defendants.
The magistrate said that even though witnesses (during the PI), had placed Lamaizon and McIntyre at the murder scene, the question arises as to whether this is sufficient to convict the men of the capital offence. Finally, in the absence of the mental element to commit the unlawful killing, the two men were pronounced free to go.
Meanwhile, on Thursday afternoon Constable Anthony Blackman testified to witnessing the entire ordeal.
The rank who was clad in a blue t-shirt and a faded red knee-length shorts paired with a flip-flop, recounted that on the day of the incident two motor cars (which he described as a white new model Primo and a Black Felder Wagon) and a CG motor cycle emerged from the western side of Laing Avenue. He named the driver of the motorcycle as one Romel Ross while identifying Rambarose as the driver of the white Primo.
Blackman recalled seeing the wife of the deceased approaching the driver of the white car when an argument ensued; however, he noted that from where he was sitting (some 69 feet away) he could not have heard what they were saying but he was able to (visually) witness the entire ordeal which lasted approximately five minutes. He further stated that he was able to fully see the faces of all the men whom he named as Romel Ross, Negus Lamaizon, Jermaine Jeffers, Howard Rambarose and Samuel McIntyre.
The men then reportedly left the scene and returned shortly after when Blackman observed Malik walking over a nearby bridge and returning across at a fast rate.
Blackman continued that the men started to argue and though he was unable to clearly decipher what they were saying, “I did hear something about money”, he told the court. The men reportedly left the scene hereafter, but not before Ross shouted to the deceased “I will shoot you up”.
Blackman further testified that he removed from where he was perched and entered his house at Lot 84 after Malik approached him and told him “something”.
A few minutes later when he came out of the house he swore that he saw Malik with both hands in the air as Ross stood armed with a black pistol along with a second gunman he identified as “Spleen” who had a shotgun pointed at the deceased’s face.
Malik then reportedly pushed the gun from out of his face and as Spleen slapped him, Ross raised his hand and pointed it towards the deceased.
“And I heard an explosion sounding like a gunshot, shortly after I heard another explosion that seemed to have come from the suspected shotgun of the number two accused”.
He then testified to seeing Malik walk to the eastern side of the street where he fell to the ground face first as the men escaped.
Constable Blackman related that he witnessed the entire shooting from the door of the dwelling house at Lot 84, approximately 40 feet away from crime scene. He then approached the fallen body and noticed that he was bleeding profusely from the upper part of his body as the hysterical wife hovered over her husband’s still form.
The police rank concluded his testimony by relating that he then reported the incident to the Brickdam Police Station where he gave a statement to which he attached his signature.
Subsequent to the lengthy testimony, the matter was adjourned to be continued on Friday at 13:00 hrs in Court-three before Magistrate Judy Latchman, for cross examination by Defense Counsel, Stanley Moore.