Wed | Jan 24, 2018

St Thomas man charged with murdering his girfriend

Published:Tuesday | January 3, 2017 | 12:00 AMShanna-Kaye Monteith

Members of the Arcadia community in St Thomas are now breathing sighs of relief as the man accused of killing 19-year-old Tashoy Barrett is now off the streets and in the custody of the police.

Twenty-nine-year-old Odaine Keyes, who on Sunday turned himself in to the St Thomas police nearly a week after being asked to surrender, was charged with the murder of his girlfriend and is to appear before the court early next week.

The body of the young woman was found in Keyes' house lying in a pool of blood by friends who went searching after noticing that they had not seen her since the day before.

Since the incident, Barrett's friends were forced to move out of the community because of threats they said they had received. Among those moving was Ranae Johnson, who last week told The Gleaner that she received a call from Keyes prior to discovering her friend's body.

Johnson, Barrett's best friend, said she feels safe knowing that Keyes is no longer roaming the streets of Arcadia.

"I can go home now," she said, adding that though she is happy he's in custody and that she cannot get over the hurt of losing her friend.

According to her: "I still feel hurt and broken knowing that I won't see Tashoy when I go home and knowing she's gone ... . It's just hard. It's like I can't even believe it up until now. It just pains my heart."

Johnson told The Gleaner that although she doesn't believe Keyes deserves a trial, she understands the justice system.

"That's just how it works. I cannot fight the justice system. I hope justice is served. It must be served. God knows everything. I will just trust God and not the process," she said.

In addition to murder charges, Keyes was charged with the assault of a motorcyclist he allegedly hit from his bike, as well as with malicious destruction of property.

He is also facing the possibility of wounding charges in relation to a woman he allegedly chopped in the mouth when she refused to sell him a phone card.