Mon | Oct 23, 2017

'It's not fair' - Family of dead pregnant woman speaks out

Published:Wednesday | April 5, 2017 | 12:00 AMShanna Monteith
Shamean Lamont stands by her sister's grave in the backyard.
Sisters of Kayann Lamont, Shamean (left) and Novia Lamont, console their grandmother.
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Tears flowed afresh in the small community of Logwood, St Thomas, home to the family of Kayann Lamont, the pregnant woman who was killed by a policeman in 2012.

Old wounds were ripped open on Monday afternoon when police Corporal Dwayne Smart, the man indicted for her death, was freed of all charges, which included murder and wounding with intent.

Smart and Lamont were reportedly involved in an altercation after she was accosted for using expletives.

Sister of the pregnant woman, Novia Lamont, who was also shot in the incident, cried injustice when approached by The Gleaner.

“It’s not fair to the family at all. We neva did a look for that! For him to get away with everything? He shot and killed my sister, then shot me in my shoulders, and no charges at all? I haven’t been able to work since. My babyfather have to be doing everything for me, cook, clean, wash.

“Nuh justice nuh deh a Jamaica!” she said.

Equally devastated but more outraged was 34-year-old Shamean Lamont, eldest of the three sisters who also witnessed the incident recounted the moment she found out her sister’s death would have gone “unjustified”.

“When the judge ask the man (juror) about the murder, mi hear like him say, ‘Not guilty.’ I wasn’t certain I heard correctly, so I went closer where mi could see him mouth because clearly, I wasn’t hearing.

“When he was asked about manslaughter and wounding with intent, him say not guilty again, suh mi say, ‘No, man! This nuh real! God, yuh a sleep? If yuh sleeping God, please wake up!’

“I rushed outside, and from mi start walk, I don’t even know where or how I reach where I was. I was walking blindly. I don’t know how I never walk into a car! Mi a walk and a bawl and no tears! Like I was bawling on the inside. I felt like I was bleeding all over. Mi feel like a yesterday (Monday) Kayann dead,” she cried, adding that when she got home, she went to lie on her sister’s grave.

... Grandma wailed!

And like fuel to their tear ducts was the sudden wail of their grandmother who was sitting in the corner sobbing.

“Look how dem just kill mi Kayann! Mi have her from she on breast!” she cried.

She continued: “Mi get a call the day and the person tell me to give my son the phone. Mi see him go one side and mi hear him ask the person if she dead. Him look round on mi and was crying, but wasn’t saying anything.

“Mi tell him mi hear what he said and mi bawl out: ‘Dem shoot Kay ’cause of one bad word? Same time her two pickney dem run from down the road and ask, ‘Mama, a true dat dem kill Mummy?’ then the three of us hug up and bawl.”

Lamont died leaving her two daughters, who were aged five and nine at the time.

“One of them birthday was Monday, the same day them hear seh nobody was charged (convicted) for the death of their mother.

“Right now, one of them different. I don’t even know what to tell you. From her mother dead, her behaviour changed completely, like she rebelling. Nobody cyah talk to her. She has become so cruel! I have to try my best with them,” said Shamean Lamont.

They said that they would be grateful for a retrial and would ensure that they got ‘justice’. “We not going to do anything illegal but we will go to the last to ensure that justice prevails.”

One member of the family softly uttered: “Justice in Jamaica for poor people is ‘just ice’; when you think you have it, it just melts away right before your eyes.”