Mon | Dec 16, 2019

Witness details jailhouse confession of accused killer

Published:Friday | November 15, 2019 | 12:51 AMLivern Barrett/Senior Staff Reporter

A witness yesterday detailed in court how an accused killer admitted, during a jailhouse conversation, that he shot a teenage girl because “she did a bawl out too loud” while she was being chopped by one of his cronies.

The witness was giving evidence in the murder trial of Sanja Ducally and Kemar Riley, which resumed in the Home Circuit Court after a near one-week break.

Ducally and Riley are accused of killing Charmaine Cover-Rattray, 40, and her 18-year-old daughter, Joeith Lynch, inside their Lauriston, St Catherine, home on July 20, 2011. Both women were decapitated.

The court has ordered that the witness’ name not be published.

According to the witness, he was in custody at the Spanish Town Police Station when Riley was brought there “hopping” on the morning of July 27, 2011.

He said later that day, he went over to Riley – who he knew then as ‘Blacks’ – and enquired, “A wah really gwaan?

“Him say, ‘You nuh hear bout the woman and her daughter?’” the witness quoted Riley as saying.

The witness said the accused killer “turn to me and say him vex bout wah gwaan because that shouldn’t gwaan”.

According to his account, Riley indicated that Cover-Rattray and Lynch had “Labourite family” in Tredegar Park, a nearby community who “dem programme” to go to Lauriston and kill another man, whom he identified as ‘Scott’.

The witness said Riley disclosed that this prompted him and two cronies he identified as ‘Adrian’ and ‘Wormy’ to move in on the mother and daughter.

He said Riley revealed that they kicked off the door to the women’s two-bedroom dwelling house and entered Lynch’s room.

“Him say him hold on pan the girl and Wormy chop the girl,” the witness recounted.

According to the witness, the accused killer disclosed that Lynch began calling out Wormy’s correct name and pleaded with him, saying, “You a go kill me.”

“Him say him did haffi move Wormy out the way and shoot her because she did a bawl out too much. He said same time Adrian dem programme the mother round the next room,” the witness recounted, using the street slang for murder.

“Him say dem did haffi cut off the daughter bead. Same time, Adrian in a di other room a cut off di mother head,” he continued.

The witness said he hissed his teeth and got up from beside Riley, saying, “Jah know, dawg, a dat really gwaan.”

But Riley’s attorney, Lloyd McFarlane, armed with the three statements the witness gave police investigators, suggested to him that he was lying.

The first statement, a 13-page document, was signed on July 29, 2011. The others were given on August 3 and 19 that same year.

The witness acknowledged, after his first statement was read to him, that it made no mention of his conversation with Riley, but insisted that he told the police. The conversation was included in the second statement.

“I’m suggesting to you that at no time you had a conversation with Blacks about the two ladies being killed.” McFarlane questioned.

“Yes, we did a talk bout that,” the witness said, insisting that the conversation with Riley happened on July 27, 2011.

The trial continues today.

livern.barrett@gleanerjm.com