– as Judge overrules Defence No Case Submission
Justice Franklyn Holder on Thursday last overruled a No Case Submission and called on the accused to lead a defence when the trial in the Angoy’s Avenue land dispute murder continued in the Berbice High Court.
On trial before Justice Holder and a mixed Jury is former national volleyball stalwart and popular New Amsterdam businessman, Charles Henry called Charles Bristol, 57, a re-migrant Guyanese of Main Street and Lad Lane, New Amsterdam, and owner of the Bristol Mall.
He is accused of killing Errol Lindo, 51, on Wednesday April 16, 2014 at High Dam, Caracas, East Canje, Berbice.
Henry is being represented by Attorneys-at-Law Nigel Hughes and Kim Kyte, in association with Tanya Warren Clements and Shabana Barnwell.
In a lengthy narration from the dock, Henry stated that he is the owner of a plot of land situated at Lot 1 Caracas, Vryheid West Canje.
According to him, the land was owned by his great uncle since the 1930s and it was handed down to him by a court order granted by Justice William Ramlall on the 8th May 2012.
He stated that after visiting the area on many occasions, he was informed that persons were claiming the land and collecting rent from others who were occupying it.
He consulted his lawyers Adrian and Ian Anamayah who sent notices to the squatters to vacate the land.
The residents including Lindo attended meetings with his lawyers and Regional Chairman David Armogan and were told the land belongs to Henry and they should cooperate.
He learnt that Lindo had moved out from the area but had left his shack behind.
Henry said that he was advised by his lawyers to dismantle the shack.
He contacted some workers and they went to the premises and began the process.
Henry told the court that while doing so, a woman came and using profanities and slamming a cutlass against the wall, she threatened to chop the men if they did not stop breaking the building.
According to the accused, he told the woman that he owned the place and urged her to leave.
The woman refused and Henry was forced to call his lawyers including Horatio Edmonson and related to him what was happening. He was advised to call the police, which he did.
He was subsequently alerted by a shout of “lookout”.
Henry said when he looked up, he saw Lindo with an axe advancing towards him. He was about 15 feet away. He took out his licensed firearm and fired a warning shot in the air.
Lindo was still advancing towards him, Henry said.
He said began to back away and as Lindo advanced he fired a shot towards his left leg. Lindo was still advancing towards him and as he continued to back away he slipped. Lindo was almost upon him and upon falling, he fired another shot at Lindo who eventually fell to the ground.
He said he immediately called his lawyer and told him what happened.
Henry said he was advised to call the police, by the lawyer who also told him to secure the axe, so that he could hand it over to the police. He was also advised not to leave the crime scene and wait until the police arrived.
He said he began taking pictures with his IPod and while bringing the axe out of the yard, he was attacked by a mob that took the axe, his I Pod and his holster away and threw them into the trench. They also tried to take his firearm away. He sought refuge in a nearby yard since the crowd was coming after him.
He called 911 and Central Police station but got no response. He also called Commanders Brian Joseph and Clifton Hicken. All the time he was being stoned until the police arrived.
He claimed that some residents began looting the vehicle and tried to push it into the trench. The vehicle was eventually set on fire. Despite the presence of the police, the crowd became more hostile and the police had to fire warning shots in the air.
The police called for backup and a squad of fully armed ranks with riot gear eventually arrived and escorted him out of the area.
The defence also called Attorney-at-Law Edmonson who stated that on the day in question, he received a number of calls from Henry and he advised him accordingly. He also told him that he was on his way.
Also called to the witness stand was contractor Mark O’Brien. He outlined what happened on the day in question. He was at the scene and saw most of what occurred. He was beaten and had to flee. He gave a statement to the police and sought medical attention at the New Amsterdam Hospital.
Prosecutor Backer, during the cross examination of Obrien, pointed out a number of inconsistencies in his statement.
The matter is continuing today.
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