Ex-cop calls sister, father as witnesses at trial over shooting of teen in mouth

Franz Paul, the former cadet officer who was charged with shooting the then 15-year-old Alex Griffith in the mouth in 2014, yesterday called his sister and father as witnesses when his trial continued.

Paul, of Lot 189 Freeman Street, East La Penitence, is on trial before city magistrate Fabayo Azore on the charge that he shot Griffith in his mouth on April 30, 2014 at Georgetown.

He had testified at the last hearing that his gun went off during a scuffle with the teen over the weapon. He had said the teen had been held as part of an investigation into the robbery of his sister.

Franz Paul

Nadia Paul, who took the stand yesterday, recounted the robbery, which occurred as she was returning home from the University of Guyana.

She said that on the night of April 30, 2014, as she was about three-quarters of the way into Freeman Street, she saw two young men dressed in short pants. One was wearing an orange jersey and the other a striped jersey. Both of the men, Nadia noted, wore caps. She said she was unable to see their faces because it was also dark.

As she made her way past the men, Nadia said that one of them grabbed her bag containing her textbooks, cellphone and other items. As they both tugged for the bag, the second attacker sprayed her in the face with a substance that burned her eyes, nose and mouth. She then fell to the ground and the men left with her bag.

Nadia added that she then went to a nearby yard and washed off her face then proceeded home, where she told her mother what took place. She then went to the East La Penitence Station with her mother and her brother.

Alex Griffith (Photo by Oliceia Tinnie)

At the station, she said, she gave a statement and then she and her mother were taken home by a patrol vehicle. On their way home, Nadia was asked by the patrol to point out the area where the attack occurred. She added that on their way to the scene, she saw her brother drive by in another police patrol vehicle.

About 20 minutes after she was taken home, she and her mother went back to the scene of the robbery, where she saw the police speaking to a young man who was shirtless. She recalled telling the police that based on the young man’s height and build, he seemed to be one of the attackers. She later went home.

Nadia was asked if she knew Alex Griffith or saw him at the scene of the crime. She told the court that she did not know Griffith before the incident nor did she see him in the yard where she washed her face after being robbed.

Nadia was then cross-examined by the police prosecutor, Assistant Superintendent of Police Stephen Telford.

Under cross-examination, Nadia told the court that Franz was not in her company after she made the report at the station and that she did not see him with a gun.

Her father, Mervyn Paul, then took the stand and he gave evidence about the night of the attack and was then cross-examined by the prosecutor. The matter was then adjourned until August 15, when the accused is expected to call his final witness.

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