Police on the East Coast of Demerara (ECD) are investigating the murder of a 50-year old woman whose body was found buried in an unfinished bathroom of a house at Melanie North last evening.
Dead is 50-year old Joan Durant, a mother of three of Laurie Lewis Road, Melanie North, ECD. The woman was reported missing by her relatives since Tuesday and last evening her husband led the police to the unfinished bathroom where her decomposing remains were stumbled upon by the lawmen. Her husband Leslie Durant has been taken into custody.
According to reports, Joan Durant was last seen around midday on Tuesday by her relatives. Earlier that day, her son who is a miner contacted her by phone and told her that he would travel to her home later that day. The man was at Linden at the time and reports are that he called his mother several times later in the afternoon but the phone rang out. The woman’s husband, who is not the father of her children, informed relatives when they contacted him that his wife had packed a bag of clothes and left the house following an argument.
Relatives made several attempts to contact the woman that evening since they found it strange that she would walk out of her home and they later checked several locations, including a church in the community for her but to no avail. The family then reported the woman missing to the police and several ranks visited the home on Tuesday evening but were informed by her husband that she had moved out.
The lawmen briefly scoured the single-flat home and its surroundings and subsequently left the area. However, the woman’s son who travelled from the interior to spend time with her visited the home late yesterday afternoon and encountered a stench emanating from the back of the house. This raised his suspicions and he subsequently informed the police who returned to the house yesterday afternoon.
“The police boy come over by we and seh if ya’ll see what this man do with this woman …and he had the guts to bury she in the same house and sleep deh two nights”, a neighbour told Stabroek News.
Her body was found under a heap of sand in the unfinished structure.
When this newspaper arrived at the scene last evening, a large crowd had gathered to get a glimpse of the home where the incident occurred. The police had cordoned off the house which is surrounded by tall flowering plants and were awaiting the force’s forensic team to carry out their investigations.
The woman’s neighbours told Stabroek News that the couple quarrelled regularly. They said that on Tuesday, the man and his wife were quarrelling loudly and the woman threatened to leave him.
They said that the woman was an integral member of the church in the area and she would regularly participate and even sponsor social activities in the community. They noted, however, that her husband kept regular tabs on her and would become enraged whenever she ventured out of the community.
At her mother’s home at another section of Melanie, her sister Audrey Yorke, who resides in the United States, told Stabroek News that her sister’s husband would become jealous whenever he visited their home. She said that the couple owned a minibus which they operate together to earn an income.
She said, ”when he come here he sits in that bus out there or sometimes he drops her off and drive away“. Yorke said that the family last spoke to Durant on Tuesday around midday and she noted that the woman was expected to visit their home later that day. She said that the woman’s son informed that he was calling his mother’s phone but that it was ringing out. She said they immediately grew concerned and later lodged a missing person’s report with the police.