T&T mother charged with murder of son, 8

(Trinidad Guardian) Hours before the funeral service of eight-year-old Dimario Ragoonanan on Friday his mother Marcia Harper appeared in court charged with his murder. Marcia, 30, who was held shortly after her son was reportedly found hanging from a curtain in his bedroom, appeared before acting Deputy Chief Magistrate Rajendra Rambachan in the San Fernando Magistrates Court.

Ragoonanan and his mother lived at Fourth Street East, Corinth Settlement, Ste Madeleine. Harper was charged on Thursday night on instructions from Director of Public Prosecutions Roger Gaspard.

While Harper was walking to court yesterday escorted by a policewoman, a relative threw a jacket over her head to shield her from photographers but was warned by the officer.

When the matter was called in the First Court, Rambachan asked Harper if she was over 19 and she replied, “Yes.” Asked if she had an attorney, Harper said, “No.”  He read the charge to her that on November 12 at her Ste Madeleine home she murdered the child.

The magistrate was advising Harper that she could apply for legal aid if she could not afford to hire an attorney, when a man stood up in the public gallery. The magistrate told him he could not disturb the court and warned him that if he stood again he would be arrested. The man said Harper was his niece and Jason Jackson was her attorney. The magistrate told Harper that Jackson was not in court.

Saying bail is not granted on a murder charge, the magistrate remanded Harper into custody to re-appear on December 14. Later when Jackson arrived in court he asked the magistrate to recall Harper’s matter, but the magistrate refused.

Around 2 pm the child’s funeral service was held at Belgrove’s Funeral Home at Coffee Street, San Fernando. Harper’s relatives denied the media entry saying that the funeral was private and they did not want the media there.

After the service the child was laid to rest at St Clement’s Cemetery.

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