Mon | Aug 21, 2017

Defence attorneys wrap up closing arguments in 'death squad' trial

Published:Monday | March 13, 2017 | 3:00 PM

Attorneys for the two policemen before the court in the so-called death squad trial today urged the seven-member jury to find that prosecutors have failed to prove the charges against them.

The appeals come as defence attorneys wrapped up their closing arguments in the Home Circuit Court.

Justice Jennifer Straw, who is presiding over the trial, is to begin her direction to the jury of six women and one man.

Constable Collis Brown and Corporal Roan Morrison are on trial for murder and wounding with intent.

They were arrested and charged by the Independent Commission of Investigations following a shooting incident in May Pen, Clarendon on February 13, 2010 in which 20-year-old Phaebian Dinnal was killed and another man injured.

In his submissions, Brown's attorney, Norman Godfrey, noted that prosecutors, in trying to prove their case, had relied on the testimony of their main witness.

However, he challenged the credibility of the witness, reminding jurors that the Clarendon man gave three different accounts of the 2010 shooting incident.

The witness testified that Brown sat in the back seat on an unmarked car and shot him in the chest at close range with a M-16 rifle.

However, during cross-examination, it was revealed that he gave police investigators another account a day after the shooting incident, saying he did not see who shot him.

Godfrey argued that the witness contradicted himself several times while giving evidence.

He told the jury that the Clarendon man, whose name is being withheld, has been utterly and totally destroyed.

As a result, the attorney argued that the case presented by the prosecution has failed to reach the required standard.