The Deceased Beharry
A charge of manslaughter could be slapped on 47-year old Black Bay resident, Kelvin "Pussy" Antoine in connection with the shooting to death of Cosley Beharry on Christmas Day in the village of Maran in St. John's.
Informed sources told GRENADA TODAY that Antoine was taken into custody early Wednesday morning for the second time to the Gouyave Police station for questioning by the lawmen.
Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Christopher Nelson confirmed to this newspaper that the murder suspect was re-arrested as part of the "continuing investigation" into the slaying of Beharry.
According to Nelson, the probe is now at "a very critical stage" and that "we have had additional information" to assist the State in taking a decisive decision on whether to charge or eventually release Antoine.
He did not give details but sources said that the DPP had requested advise from both local and foreign ballistics and forensic experts on the shooting incident.
Nelson is also known to have visited the crime scene and interviewed several "critical witnesses" to the shooting to help him arrive at a decision.
Inspector of Police, Earl Dunbar was spotted by this newspaper on Wednesday morning outside the DPP's office awaiting the arrival of Nelson to get further instructions on the shooting incident.
Insp. Dunbar who is based at the main office of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) in St. George's is believed to be playing a key role in helping Gouyave Police Station in the Maran shooting incident.
According to Nelson, the Maran killing of Beharry is not " a straight forward case" as some persons in the public are trying to make it out to be.
47-Year old Antoine is accused of shooting Beharry to death on the night of December 25 outside the home of the deceased at Maran, St. John's with a licensed firearm.
The suspect was detained by police on the night of the shooting but was released 48 hours later pending further investigations by the police.
His release without charges being laid against him sparked public outcry, particularly from residents of St. John's.
This prompted DPP Nelson to address reporters at a press conference and giving assurances to the public that investigations into the shooting incident are continuing given the circumstances under which Beharry was shot.
He said there are some outstanding matters which he had directed the police to work on as part of the probe.
According to Nelson, he was getting the impression that people seem to be making assumptions about the failure of the police to lay charges while the investigation is still continuing.
Speculation is rife that political involvement in the matter is staggering the process of the investigations.
Pussy is believed to be a major financier of the New National Party Constituency Group in St. John's.
When asked by a GRENADA TODAY reporter if there was political interference in the investigations, Nelson said, "I haven't a clue what you are speaking about."
When pressed on whether he was working independently of the politicians, the DPP said, "I have always worked independently. I will continue to work independently and it is my constitutional and professional duty to work independently. I am surprised at the question."
Antoine's attorney, Derek Sylvester also denied that there was political interference in the case. "No, no, no, no! I would say no, and I would say so categorically. As far as I am aware when the incident allegedly occurred, the family (of Antoine) contacted me, and that is the only person that contacted me", he said.
"I immediately returned the call and on Boxing Day (December 26). I went to the (Gouyave) Police Station and I had discussions with the accused. I asked him to co-operate with the police, he gave the police a full statement while I was there," he added.
Sylvester charged that it would be malicious and improper for anyone to say that there is political interference in the case."To say so would be to impute that the police operates on the basis of political considerations, or for that matter, the Director of Public Prosecutions," he remarked.
The defence attorney described the DPP as one who was very professional in the execution of his duties.
Opposition Leader, Tillman Thomas and leading criminal defense attorney, Anselm Clouden have made public statements suggesting that the police should get on with the job on hand.
Sources close to the police investigation indicated to GRENADA TODAY that the lawmen collected five witness statements which point to the 47-year old accused man acting in self defence when he fired the shotgun at close range at Beharry.
Sylvester was adamant that in order for his client to be picked up again by the police "there must be an intervening cause," something that has happened and nobody was aware of it.
"But from my lens, from what I am seeing I do not see it as being probable, but it is practical," he added.
In the absence of Antoine being charged for Beharry's death, there would be a coroner's inquest to determine the cause of death which could then lead to a charge of either murder or manslaughter being slapped on him once there is a measure of criminal culpability for him to bear.
The incident arose out of an incident Beharry earlier had with his stepdaughter who, incidentally, is Antoine's daughter.
Beharry is due to be buried on Tuesday at the family's cemetery in Diego Piece, St. Mark's after a service conducted at the Samaritan Seventh Day Adventist Church.
Webmaster's Note: Unconfirmed reports state that Kelvon "Pussy" Antoine has since been charged in the Gouyave Magistrate's Court, and remanded in custody.