Accused admitted to killing GTM executive – lead detective

The lead detective in the murder of GTM executive, Bert Whyte told members of the jury yesterday that the accused had admitted to killing Whyte.

Clive Knights is currently on trial in the High Court after being indicted for murdering Whyte on May 14, 2012. Whyte reportedly died from haemorrhage and shock due to perforation of the heart and lung as a result of the two stab wounds he sustained.

Retired Assistant Superintendent of Police, Joel David recounted how Knights confessed to killing Whyte after the allegation of murder was put to him. According to David, the accused had taken responsibility for Whyte’s death and had said that the man was his friend and that he was sorry.

David further said that Knights had made the request to have Lance Corporal Kester Cosbert present when the statement was being taken. Knights had reportedly described Cosbert as a friend and former classmate of his and as a result, the lance corporal was summoned to the Brickdam Police Station.

 Clive Knights
Clive Knights
Bert Whyte
Bert Whyte

David further said that the statement was given freely and voluntarily and a result investigations continued into the matter and Knights was subsequently charged with the capital offence of murder.

Under cross-examination, David admitted that Knights was seen as suspect in the murder based on the reports that he was the last person to be seen with the dead man.

He further admitted that Whyte’s niece had examined several pictures in the police photo album before identifying the accused as being the man she saw seated in the front passenger seat of her uncle’s car on the day that he died.

A follow up question by defence counsel revealed that David did not place Knights on an identification parade. On re-examination by the prosecution, David said that this was because Knights had already admitted to killing Whyte.

Also offering evidence in court was finger print technician Curt Williams who was stationed at the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) at the time the murder had occurred. Williams told the court that he had travelled to New Amsterdam following a request made by ranks at the New Amsterdam Police Station. He further related that upon his arrival there, he was pointed in the direction of a motor vehicle which was suspected to be Whyte’s vehicle.

According to Williams, the interior windows of the vehicle as well as the rear view mirrors and outside of the car were dusted for finger prints. However, the prints lifted were later found to be smudged and blurred thus a comparison could not have been made.

Lance Corporal Kester Cosbert was also called upon to testify. Cosbert related being summoned to the Brickdam police station following a request made by Knights. Cosbert said that his friendship with Knights had spanned a total of 25 years going back all the way to primary school.

However, his testimony did not go further as Thompson raised several issues resulting in a voir dire (a trial within a trial) having to be conducted.

The trial continues today.

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