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Saul awaits verdict in murder case

Saul awaits verdict in murder case

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Evidence from both defense and prosecution in the Dillon Saul murder case has already been presented and the only thing remaining is for the verdict to be announced.

Addresses from both sides should have been heard yesterday, along with a summation of the case by presiding judge Frederick Bruce-Lyle.{{more}}

Saul, 32, a mason, of Richland Park, is on trial at the High Court charged with the murder of teacher Ava Grant-Mornix on October 8, 2007, at Richland Park. A post mortem report read in court revealed that Grant-Mornix died from blunt trauma and multiple stab wounds.

The case, which commenced on Tuesday this week, heard evidence from nine prosecution witnesses and one defence witness, namely the accused Saul. The prosecution’s case was that on the tragic day, Grant-Mornix, 42, was leaving her house to take her 5-year-old son to school when she was attacked by the accused. It was said that Saul struck Grant-Mornix over her head with a piece of pipe about three feet long then stabbed her several times about her body.

Now six years old and hardly strong enough to hold the Bible to be sworn and too short to reach the microphone, K-max Mornix took the witness box to give his account of what transpired on the day his mother was killed. Mornix recalled that he saw when the accused jump from a step and hit Grant-Mornix with the piece of pipe in her head. “He hit she in the middle of she head and she fell on me and then he start to stab she up with a knife,” the brave youngster stated. K-max added, “My mommy been bawling out for help when he been stabbing she and after he run down in the yard,” stated K-max.

Another witness, Shanel Ottley, teacher at the C.W. Prescod Primary School, said that she was in her house when she heard a loud cry from Grant-Mornix. Ottley said when she ran outside, she saw Saul in a bent position over the deceased, who was on the ground. “He was stabbing her several times over and over then I shouted at him to stop, but he did not and continued stabbing her,” Ottley recounted. Moments later, Ottley said a few persons came to the scene and Saul fled. Grant-Mornix was taken to the Levi Latham Health Centre then transferred to the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital where she succumbed to her injuries.

Under cross-examination by defence Counsel Stephen Williams, Ottley stated that Saul and Grant-Mornix’s family did not get along very well. She stated that Saul would be arguing most of the time saying: “They don’t want me around.”

Sarah Gumbs, a farmer who lived in the area at time said she head Saul cursing Grant-Mornix’s daughter Kenesha about 6am that morning. Gumbs said that she heard Kenesha asking the accused what he was doing behind their house and he replied, “So wa happen? I can’t drink some (expletive) water.” Moments after, Gumbs stated that she heard Saul say, “When everybody gone to school and work, ah going to kill Queenie (Grant-Mornix) for 8 o’clock,” Gumbs added.

Grant-Mornix’s husband, Maxwell Mornix, who was at work in Queen’s Drive when he received the news of his wife’s stabbing, told the court that Saul used to be at their home all the time, as he was a relative of the family. Mornix said that they had such a great relationship to the point where Saul used to come and eat anything at their home. He also stated that his wife even used to offer financial assistance to the accused.

Exercising his right to speak, Saul took the oath and gave his side of the story. Appearing a bit uneasy at times, Saul stated that he and the Mornixes had not had a good relationship since his great grandmother died in 1997 and left the house to him. Saul added that they would always curse him and say that they didn’t want him around.

On the tragic morning, Saul mentioned that he saw Grant-Mornix and K-max coming from their home about 25 feet from his and heard her saying, “Me nah want you round here and yuh better move out by this evening.” Saul said he told the deceased that he was not moving until he was ready to go back to Bequia where he worked.

While arguing with the deceased, Saul said he recalled seeing Grant-Mornix trying to take something out of her handbag. “When I see this, I saw a piece of iron on the ground, then I hit she with it.” He added that, “It have a knife way been deh, so l Continued from page 6

I tek it up and stab she with it.” Saul told the court that when he realized what he did, he walked through a banana field and hitched a ride to the Mesopotamia Police station where he turned himself in.

In 1999, Saul recalled that he was having a “drink-up” with some of his friends at his house and he was singing, “Me own family against me, what a time.” Saul further stated that one of the neighbours shouted and said “All yo na see something wrong wid he.” The accused said Grant-Mornix told the neighbours, “Come and help me tie up de man.” Saul said they tied his hands and feet and he was later taken to the Mental Health Centre where he spent the night.

Under cross-examination by Director of Public Prosecutions Colin Williams, Saul said that the pipe was about 15 feet away from him and the deceased was standing another 15 feet away from in a different direction. “When I saw she put she hand in her bag, I ran and pick up the pipe, then run at Ava with it.” Saul stated. Speaking under his breath at times, swinging his hands constantly and having long pauses in between questions, the defendant told the court that he picked up the knife from the ground of the yard where he had hit the deceased with the pipe. “ I don’t know if it drop out her bag,” Saul added. He explained that he was angry from all the arguing between Kenesha and the deceased to the point where he lost his temper. “How I was angry, ah lose control of my temper.” Saul added. The accused added that he never threatened to kill or chop anyone and stated that he was standing at the side of his house when the deceased was coming from her house.(KW)