Sep 03, 2016 News
Osmond Griffith, the key witness in the Freddie Kissoon assault case was killed in an accident early
yesterday on the East Coast Demerara (ECD) Public Road, in the vicinity of Industry.
The accident occurred shortly after 02:00 hrs just as Griffith and a few friends were returning home from a “hang” at the Plaisance line top.
Reports are that the car in which the D’Urban Backlands resident was a passenger, had pulled over and stopped at the side of the public road for some of the occupants to urinate when the 41-year-old man was killed.
Griffith was standing next to the car and was in the process of zipping up his pants when a speeding car, heading towards the city, crashed into him, flinging him into the air and onto the roadway—some 20 feet from the point of impact.
The father of 15 was pronounced dead at the Georgetown Public Hospital.
The driver of the car which struck and killed Griffith drives a Toyota Caldina Wagon bearing registration number HC 4399.
The police were able to confirm that the driver of the car was under the influence of alcohol. He is presently in custody at the Sparendaam Station.
According to a police report, the driver claimed that he was imbibing at the Plaisance line top and after leaving there, he lost control of his vehicle.
The driver also claimed that when his vehicle finally came to a stop, he noticed that a man was lying in front of his car.
“The guy said that the occupants in the victim’s car tried to attack him with an ice-pick so he run away and hide in a yard nearby. He only came out when he saw the police,” a source close to the investigation said.
Yesterday, Clyde Jordan, who was with Griffith at the time of the accident, said that they had just left Plaisance line top and were heading to the city when tragedy struck.
“It was a lot of us, so we left in two cars. Me, Griffith and another guy were sitting at the back of our car and a girl was in front with the driver. Our car was at the back and I asked the driver to pull over because I wanted to urinate,” Jordan said.
He added that when he exited the car to urinate, Griffith, the driver and a young man from the other car joined him. It was while the men were urinating, the accident occurred.
“Griffith was now zipping up his pants and he see this car coming and he push away this youth man and the car hit him… and it (car) was flying. It stopped like 40 feet away and then the driver came out and run,” Jordan recalled.
Eyewitnesses to the accident said that the driver was speeding and did appear to be under the influence of alcohol, which police later confirmed.
Griffith was a key witness in the 2010 feces-throwing attack on Kaieteur News columnist.
Kwame McCoy, Jason Abdulla and Shawn Hinds were all charged and are currently on trial before Magistrate Judy Latchman at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court, for the attack on the columnist.
The men allegedly threw fecal matter into Kissoon’s face when he emerged from the Nigel’s Supermarket, at Robb Street, Georgetown on May 24, 2010.
It was reported that an individual walked up to the columnist’s vehicle and threw the substance on him.
After the attack, Kissoon reportedly drove behind the perpetrator who ran north along Light Street then went into North Road, before jumping into awaiting motorcar.
During a previous hearing of the trial, Kissoon was asked by Police Prosecutor Kerry Bostwick to recall what transpired on the night he was attacked; to explain where he was before he parked his vehicle and the events that occurred thereafter.
Kissoon recalled that on the day in question, he had left Nigel’s Supermarket on Robb Street, Georgetown and entered his vehicle which was parked nearby. He said that he had lowered his vehicle’s window when a man walked up and threw a substance on him.
The witness recounted that after the substance was thrown on him; a man of African descent walked away, jogged across North Road, proceeded down Merriman Mall and entered a motorcar. He also went on to describe his attacker’s height and body structure.
When asked by Prosecutor Bostwick if there were other persons in the getaway car, Kissoon replied in the affirmative.
However, when asked by the prosecutor to point out the person who had thrown the substance on him, Kissoon was unable to do so, indicating that the individual was not present in court.
Under further cross examination by Hanoman, Kissoon said that he discarded the shirt he was wearing at the time of the attack, because he had no reason for wanting to keep a nasty piece of material.
”For such an event in your life you can’t remember what type of shirt you were wearing?” the Magistrate asked.
Kissoon then sought to explain that it was an ordinary denim shirt. While under cross examination, the KN columnist later testified that following the attack, the assailant jumped into a vehicle which had an unusual number plate. He added that he could not recall if the vehicle was tinted, but said he had a complete view of the car when it passed him.
Kissoon stated that he could not identify any distinguishing marks on his attacker.
”If my attacker was running on the road I would have struck him down with my vehicle, but not to kill him,” the witness said.
When further questioned, Kissoon told the court that police were very uncooperative with him during investigations.
The trial will continue on September 9, when Kissoon will be further cross examined.
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