Trial of alleged wife killer underway

Donessa Barker

The trial of Miguel Barker, who is accused of murdering his wife, yesterday heard that the woman was fatally attacked in a rear bedroom of a Bagotville house.

Barker is on trial before Justice Navindra Singh and a 12-member jury at the High Court in Georgetown for the April 30th, 2015, murder of Donessa Barker at Bagotville, West Bank Demerara.

Testifying yesterday was Jovana Frank, who recalled visiting the Lot 12 Inner Bagotville home of her stepsister, Shaneiza Clarke, where the deceased and her husband were staying at the time.

She said she arrived at her sister’s home about three that afternoon and she met Donessa for the first time.

She said they all spoke for some time and she even counselled the now dead woman about her marriage.

Frank said the three of them were sitting on the verandah conversing when they heard rattling in the bushes at the side of the house. The witness told the court she peeked out, but saw nothing.

Frank recalled Donessa leaving and going to the back room for her cellphone, while she and Clarke remained in the balcony, when they suddenly heard screams emanating from the woman.

She told the court that her stepsister then immediately ran to the front room, from where she retrieved a cutlass and raced to Donessa’s room.

According to Frank, she then heard her sister saying, “He gone! He gone!”

She said Clarke and a bloodied Donessa then emerged from the room but the injured woman managed to only make it to the front door before collapsing.

Frank said that Clarke then immediately rushed out to the road to summon help, while she remained behind with Donessa. By that time, the woman said many villagers began to congregate.

Taking the witness stand yesterday also was Detective Constable Jemain Elcock, who said he arrested the accused at a Sophia residence, five days after his wife was murdered.

He recalled after receiving certain information, he went to the Sophia location where he saw a group of men, one of whom immediately took off running and scaled a fence. He said he gave chase and apprehended the man, who gave his name as Miguel Barker.

The Detective said he then arrested the suspect and put the allegation to him, while cautioning him. Elcock said the accused thereafter responded, “Is not me. Is my brother.”

Also testifying yesterday was the dead woman’s aunt, Jevone Dolphin, who recalled identifying her niece’s remains to Dr. Nehaul Singh, who thereafter performed the autopsy.

This, she said, was done at the Ezekiel Funeral Parlour four days after her niece’s death.

The pathologist, who also testified at yesterday’s hearing, gave the cause of death as haemorrhage and shock due to a stab wound to the chest.

The case continues this morning at 9.

The state’s case is being presented by Prosecutor Tiffani Lyken, in association with Narissa Leander and Abigail Gibbs, while Barker is being represented by attorney Maxwell McKay and Sherise Dowding.

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