“Nasty Man” found guilty of footballer’s murder

first_imgA late afternoon determination by a 12-member jury at the Demerara High Court has seen Delon Henry, also called “Nasty Man,” being unanimously found guilty of the September 29, 2015 murder of footballer Dexter Griffith, who was shot six times near his mother’s home at Warlock, East Ruimveldt, Georgetown.The verdict was retuned following more than five hours of deliberations, and it was not without moments of tension, as the jury had been deadlocked earlier in the day.The 12 members of the jury emerged at about 15:30h, after being sequestered for deliberations before midday. The courtroom was packed, and relatives and friends of both Henry and Griffith were on edge to hear the decision. However, there was a display of shock by relatives when the forewoman told Justice Sandil Kissoon that they were stuck at a proportion of 6-6. The judge questioned the forewoman on what was causing the discrepancy, and it was observed that the missing spent shells were among the factors causing indecision. The jurors had been told during the trial that five spent shells had been recovered from the scene. Moreover, former Inspector Jackson, who had then been a Sergeant of Police and had tendered the exhibits at the Magistrates’ Courts, had admitted on Monday that he could not find the exhibits, after making several checks at the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) Headquarters, Eve Leary.Justice Kissoon indicated that the spent shells were not presented as evidence, and indicated that more weight should be placed on the testimony of Keshawn Griffith, younger brother of the deceased man, who had testified that while in hiding, he had seen the defendant, Henry, firing a gun moments after his brother was shot.The jurors were reminded that if they find Griffith’s evidence credible, they should consider the accused guilty, but if they did not believe that evidence, they should acquit the accused.Jurors also sought clarity on Henry’s unsworn statement, but were notified that the burden was not on the accused to prove anything; rather, this was the mandate of the prosecution. After giving further directions which the jury forewoman requested in court, the judge allowed for further deliberations.All the while, Henry’s attorney, Adrian Thompson, was not in court, as he was reportedly out of the jurisdiction. Attorney John Lindner, however, stood in for Thompson during the judge’s summing up of the case. Lindner was, however, absent when the jury sought further directions.About one hour after being sent back to the deliberating room, the jury again emerged to a packed courtroom; but this time they had a unanimous guilty verdict, which left the footballer’s mother, Lavern Griffith, in tears.By that time, Attorney Lindner had returned, and he requested that a probation report on the accused be prepared and presented. As such, the matter was adjourned to July 5 for sentencing.However, Henry was given the option to speak, and in a 10-minute speech, he reiterated that he did not know anything about Warlock.It was reported in September 2015 that after being shot, Griffith had managed to stand and walk a short distance in an attempt to escape from Henry, but he eventually fell unconscious to the ground while his assailant escaped. He was taken to a city hospital, but was pronounced dead on arrival.Prosecutors Lisa Cave and Orinthia Schmidt prosecuted the State’s case. (Shemuel Fanfair)last_img read more