Looking for my sisters killer

 

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Category: Trinidad Society 29 Jun 08

 

This is the second in a series highlighting daily life of ordinary citizens in this country.

“My sister was murdered. She was stabbed in her neck and set on fire. She was 42, the mother of two teenagers.

“For two years I have been roaming the streets, Charlotte Street, Nelson Street, Independence Square, looking for her killer.

“I am obsessed with finding him. I see people and double back to make sure I am wrong or not wrong. It haunts me. Everywhere I go I think I see him. The desperation to find him is so much that I can’t sleep.

“I heard of my sister’s murder one afternoon when my older sister called and said she heard our younger sister had died in a fire.

“Her house was completely burnt, only part of the structure remained standing.

“The police told us they found the remains of what appears to be a female and couldn’t identify her, because she was burnt beyond recognition, and that they were looking for the man who was living with her.

“We told them this man called a neighbour on the morning of our sister’s death saying he had ‘a surprise.’

“That evening he called back, saying: ‘You like my surprise? I kill she,’ and hung up. The police's response was ‘OK.’

“They repeated they were looking for him, not as a suspect, but as the last person who had seen her. We blew up a photo of him, which the police distributed to other police stations. “That was it. They never followed up.

“My husband went to the autopsy. I couldn’t face it. She was charred. She had only one part of leg, a wrist was missing, her face gone. She had buck teeth, and that was used to identify her.

“Her teenage son is angry; daughter, devastated.

“I know my sister lived in a domestic situation she didn’t want us to know anything about.

“This man alienated her from her family. He controlled her. If he saw numbers he didn’t know on her cellphone, he would call the numbers. She had no privacy. No time.

“Wherever she went, he went. She lost her job because he was living on the doorstep of the office on Edward Street. He was making himself a nuisance. Her co-workers said she used to look like she was always scared.

“He is very domineering. She had to change her whole way of dressing; couldn’t wear make-up; couldn’t wear jeans. If he asked her to do something it was: ‘Do it now.’

“He would make derogatory remarks to her. One day she went to drop her niece to school. He told our mother, ‘She gone with a man.’

“Once he locked her into his apartment and she had to sneak out at 2 am. By 4 am he was on my mother’s porch looking for her.

“My sister overheard him telling her once: ‘If you leave I will hunt you down and kill you. I know your kids and the school they go to.’

“It is heartbreaking to think he put so much fear in her for her children’s lives that she didn’t think she could reach out to us.

“When we tried to talk to her about it, she said we didn’t understand and got angry. I wish I had insisted.

“For two years the police have been telling us they are ‘still looking.’ Once they said they ‘heard’ my sister’s perpetrator got on a boat and went on a small island. How do they know he got on a boat? What are they not telling us?

“Look at the way they went after the men who recently murdered a soldier. He was one of them. Unless it hits home, the police and military do nothing for citizens. We have no faith in 99.9 per cent of the police.

“There are countries with zero tolerance on crime where punishment is swift and brutal. Where people don’t spend years and years waiting for justice.

“That’s the justice we need. We drag our feet on everything

“If I see my sister’s killer I cannot promise myself I won’t go after him. He took my sister’s life for no reason, boasted about it, took everything from my niece and nephew.

“I have pictures of my sister at home and I can’t look at them.

“I live in anger and grief.”  

 

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All Articles Copyright Ira Mathur