Mon | Nov 12, 2018

Shocker! - Star witness in death squad trial gave police different account of shooting

Published:Wednesday | February 15, 2017 | 12:00 AMLivern Barrett
Witness recounted his ordeal in tears.

The Clarendon man who is the main prosecution witness in the so-called police death squad trial admitted yesterday that he gave investigators a different account of the circumstances under which he was shot and injured.

The admission came in the Home Circuit Court after the man was confronted by defence attorneys with a witness statement he signed one day after he claimed he was shot and injured by police Constable Collis Brown.

Brown, also known as 'Chucky', and Constable Roan Morrison are on trial for murder and shooting with intent.

They were charged by the Independent Commission of Investigations arising from an incident in May Pen, Clarendon, on February 13, 2010, in which Phaebian Dinnal was shot and killed and another man suffered gunshot wounds.

On Monday, the witness testified that he was walking along Windsor Avenue when a silver Toyota Probox motor car stopped beside him.

He said Brown, who was seated at the back, called out his name and ordered him, several times, to kneel on the ground. The man said when he refused to comply, Brown pointed an M-16 rifle and shot him at close range.

The witness testified that he fell to the ground near the wheel of the car with a gunshot wound.




However, Brown's lead attorney Norman Godfrey challenged that account during cross-examination with a witness statement the man gave detectives on February 14, 2010.

In the statement, excerpts of which were read out in court by Godfrey, the man told investigators that "as soon as the Probox reach some four feet from me, somebody behind the driver point a M-16 pan mi and start firing ... . Mi drop a grung (ground) right by the gate a one garage weh three old man stand up."

"Was that the truth?" Godfrey questioned.

"When dem [detectives] come fi tek the statement, I was in handcuff, under drip, with something in my nose and under a lot of pain and dem seh mi mus' tell them what mi remember," the man replied.

"Was that the truth?" Godfrey pressed.

"Yes," said the witness, whose name is being withheld.

He said he did not read over the statement, but acknowledged that he signed it.

He is to face further cross-examination today.