I generally stay away from commenting on cases under police investigations for a couple of reasons. (1) You never know how investigations are going to turn out, eating crow is not something I particularly relish.(2) the police deserve all of the deference they can get in order to do an already difficult job. With that said, one homicide has caught my attention amidst the litany of others, not for any particular defining characteristic except that it seems that particular homicide should not be too difficult to solve.
Nevertheless, over a year has passed and still, the family of the deceased has not gotten closure as the police have not made an arrest.
Now I do understand that it’s easy to shrug and say “join the line, there are thousands of unsolved murders in Jamaica,” but again the circumstances of this case cause me to second guess my deference to the police on this one.
The case involved the death of 51-year-old Germaine Junior at a home supposedly owned by an attorney at law Patrick Bailey over a year ago.
According to local reporting, the deceased was stabbed several times and shot once in the head.
The deceased man was reported to be a naturalized American citizen and was supposedly visiting the Island upon his death. Mister Junior’s family is incensed at the police and for good reason. The family insists if their loved one was a prominent person the case would have been solved long ago. They bemoan the fact that in the over one year since mister Junior’s death the police have been in contact with them only once.
A couple of points has stuck out like a sore thumb in this case which leaves much room for speculation in the absence of better reporting and more information forthcoming from the police.
♦ Patrick Bailey is a prominent attorney who easily fits into the category of the proverbial big man according to Jamaican culture.
♦ Was mister Junior there as his guest, if not his, then whose?
♦ Who else lives in the home of attorney Patrick Bailey if anyone?
♦ Police reported that Bailey stumbled upon the body about 4:30 am in his own house as he was asleep despite the fact that mister Junior was allegedly shot.
♦ If the homicide happened in a section of the residence outside mister Bailey’s earshot, (assuming the residence is large enough that Bailey would not have heard a gunshot), nevertheless who gets up and walk around the house at 4:30 am?
♦ How could Bailey sleep through what must have been a struggle much less the sound of a gunshot in his house?
♦ The statement that he stumbled upon the body at 4:30 am could only have come from Bailey himself which gives it little credibility under the circumstances.
♦ A proper coroner’s inquest should nail down approximately what time was mister Junior killed as against Patrick Bailey’s assertions.
♦ The Police reported that there was no forced entry to Bailey’s house. This is absolutely critical evidence as it demonstrates that whoever killed mister Junior had access to the residence.
♦ A knife believed to be the one used to stab mister Junior was allegedly found beside his body, was it checked for fingerprints.
♦ If Mister Junior was living abroad at the time and was only visiting the Island why would the police and others allege that he was a caretaker of the residence?
♦ The fact that mister Junior’s body was found with multiple stab wounds suggests a crime of passion coupled with the fact that he was also shot.
♦ Was Patrick Bailey’s person checked for marks which would indicate whether he was involved in a struggle, or did the police simply take his word that he slept through a stabbing and a shooting? If not why was it not done?
♦ Why was Patrick Bailey ruled medically unfit to give statements to police at the time by Doctor Jeptah Ford?
♦ According to the Jamaica Observer reporting Following the incident, attorney Patrick Bailey’s doctor and client Jephthah Ford instructed that he be confined to bed after he reportedly exhibited signs of being unwell. Ford also said he was not fit to give a statement at the time.
♦ Why was Bailey given special privileges when even police officers traumatized by instances of fatal encounters are forced to give a quick accounting as to what occurred?
♦ Who else had access to the residence if anyone and what was their relationship to mister Junior?
♦ Did the police check Patrick Bailey’s house for bloody clothes or clothes recently washed?
♦ Did the Police check outhouses (if applicable) and garbage receptacles for potential bloody clothes?
♦ If the police determined there was no forced entry to Bailey’s house how could they summarily rule him out as a suspect?
I am making no assumptions as to who killed this man, neither am I saying anyone, in particular, is responsible. What I am saying is that the Police should get up off their backsides and do the investigative work and whoever killed mister Junior should be bangled up and bundled off to jail. Bailey was reported to be arrogant when contacted by the media asserting quote” anything dem seh, mek dem seh it. I have no answer; just publish whatever they say. My back is broad. I have no comments, no comments, no comments! Just simply, you report whatever you want to,”
According to local media reporting, Assistant Commissioner of Police Élan Powell who had the crime portfolio at the time of the homicide insisted that the police were hiding nothing and the investigations would be done and the chips would fall where they may.
This statement does little to assuage the anger and distrust the family of mister Junior harbors as it relates to the police’s ability to bring the killer of their loved one to justice.
Clearly, whatever the underlying assumptions and presumptions in this case are, a human being was murdered and someone is responsible for his unlawful killing. This cannot be a difficult case to solve one way or the other.
If the owner of the premises a well-heeled lawyer did not kill the victim someone else did in his house.
It does not require rocket science to figure this case out, if no one broke into the house and there was no one else in the house, then the person in the house is the killer or the person in the house knows who killed mister Junior and has aided and abetted the coverup of this horrendous murder.
This case is a travesty and should not stand, the police cannot be that incompetent or worse pissed scared that they are unwilling to arrest the killer or killers.
Whatever the police know which caused them to rule Patrick Bailey out as a suspect ought to be made public or at least told to the grieving family.
Bailey deserves no special treatment or deference under the law over and above anyone else which would give the police reason not to divulge how they determined he was not a suspect.
In February of 2016, Assistant commissioner Powell told a Gleaner Editor’s forum that the police did not wish to name the suspects in the matter but sought to assure that the police were actively pursuing the case.
Since Powel was in charge of crime at the time both he and the head of crime must now give a proper accounting to this bereaved family as they are duty-bound to do.
There should be no more murders swept under the rug because someone knows someone who knows someone.
This should not be allowed to stand and the family should not stand for it, they are right in demanding answers.
Mike Beckles is a former Jamaican police Detective corporal, businessman, researcher, and blogger.
He is a black achiever honoree, and publisher of the blog chatt-a-box.com.
He’s also a contributor to several websites.
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