Wife killer gets 80 years

Donessa Barker

Miguel Barker was yesterday afternoon sentenced to 80 years in jail after a jury found him guilty of murdering his wife, who was knifed to death at Bagotville, West Bank Demerara almost two years ago.

The sentence was imposed by Justice Navindra Singh, who noted that he could not be merciful with the convict as he had shown no remorse for his actions.

Though the expressionless Barker said that he was “sorry for what happen,” he continued to profess his innocence, stating that he did not kill his wife, Donessa Barker.

The judge noted that even though the jury had spoken, Barker continued maintaining his innocence. “You’re giving with one hand and taking with the other,” Justice Singh said.

Justice Singh started his sentence at a base of 60 years. He thereafter added 10 years for premeditation, and an additional 10 years for the domestic violence meted out to the deceased.

Recalling the evidence presented at the trial, the judge noted that Barker had pursued his wife more than once in a bid to harm her.

For his part, defence attorney Maxwell McKay, who represented the accused in association with Sherise Dowding, said that the 29-year-old father of one was “a religious person.”

Prosecutor Tiffini Lyken, however, asked the court to take into consideration that a four-year-old had been left without a mother, while noting that the family of the deceased “still have open wounds from her loss.”

Lyken impressed upon the court, also, to consider the weapon used to carry out the attack and the fact that the deceased tried to fight off her husband—though it was a fight she lost.

Relatives of both Miguel and Donessa were moved to tears after the verdict and sentence were announced.

The jury returned with a unanimous verdict after about two hours of deliberations.

Barker murdered his wife on April 30, 2015 at Lot 12 Inner Bagotville.

Main prosecution witness Shaneiza Clarke, with whom Donessa and Miguel were living at the time, had testified to rushing to the wounded woman’s aid and seeing Miguel attempting to jump out of the bedroom window after stabbing his wife.

Clarke recalled Miguel looking straight at her, before making good his escape, leaving his badly injured and bloodied wife, who succumbed to her injuries by the time she had been taken to the hospital.

The witness had told the court that on the morning of the murder she had accompanied Donessa to the police station to make a report of Miguel advancing towards her (Donessa) the night before with a knife.

Pathologist, Dr. Nehaul Singh had given the cause of death as hemorrhage and shock due to stab wound to the chest.

The state’s case was presented by Lyken, in association with Prosecutors Narissa Leander and Abigail Gibbs.

The trial was heard at the High Court in Georgetown.

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