Sun | Sep 24, 2017

Peter Vogel trial | No forced entry cop

Published:Wednesday | June 21, 2017 | 6:00 AMLivern Barrett

A police investigator testified yesterday that there was no sign of forced entry or exit at the home of former university lecturer Dr Peter Vogel on the night he was killed.

Deputy Superintendent Webster Francis recounted that the house, located in College Common, St Andrew, was "grilled throughout" on the inside and said he made a number of observations when he went there in the hours after the former University of the West Indies lecturer was killed. "There was no sign of forced entry, neither any sign of disturbance. I inspected the windows, the doors, the grille, the roof and the grounds," Francis insisted.

He was giving evidence in the murder trial of Vogel's former live-in household helper, Yanika Scott, and her boyfriend, Kelvin Downer, in the Home Circuit Court in downtown Kingston yesterday. Francis testified that the former lecturer's body was found in the study with his hands bound behind his back, his feet bound at the ankle, and a piece of cloth tied around his mouth. His testimony came after retired detective Adrian Dennie gave evidence of an interview he conducted with Scott in May 2012. Dennie said during the interview, the former helper told him that on the night Vogel was killed, gunmen entered the home with handkerchiefs tied around their faces. He said Scott told him that the men ordered her not to move, then took her to another room.

Dennie said Scott told him that the masked men pushed her boyfriend out the house then they were both led to a motor vehicle that was owned by the former lecturer. According to him, Scott recalled that the vehicle was loaded with items belonging to Dr Vogel and said the masked gunmen ordered her boyfriend to drive.

But Francis, who was the lead investigator on the case, testified that there were three doors that gave access to Vogel's house. "None of these doors appeared to have been tampered with," he said as lead prosecutor Maxine Jackson took him through his evidence. Francis testified, too, that inside the helper's quarters he noticed "an opening" inside the roof to the attic. "It was large enough to admit an adult," he testified. The senior investigator recounted that he saw no items of clothing in the helper's quarters. "The bed appeared as if it had not been slept in," he testified.

livern.barrett@gleanerjm.com