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Two prison officers blamed for accused murderer’s escape

Two prison officers blamed for accused murderer’s escape

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Two prison officers are culpable, by negligence, in the escape of an accused murderer from Her Majesty’s Prisons in Kingstown last year, a police investigator has found.{{more}}

The three-week-long manhunt for Rillan Hill resident Godwin Moses ended on December 11, 2012, when police shot and killed him between Happy Hill and Mt Wynne.

Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves, who is also Minister of National Security, asked in December that Assistant Commissioner of Police Michael Charles investigate the escape.

Gonsalves also wanted Charles to probe the death of another accused murderer, Alberto Danzell, at the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital (MCMH).

Charles, however, told SEARCHLIGHT on Wednesday, that his investigation did not find anyone culpable for Danzell’s death.

He explained that the prisoner had been taken to the MCMH several times because of stomach pains.

On November 25, 2011, about 1:10 a.m., other inmates informed prison authorities that Danzell was again complaining of stomach pains. He was taken to the MCMH, where he later died.

Charles said a post- mortem found that Danzell died of natural causes.

Meanwhile, in relation to Moses, the cop said that prisoners were in the yard of the Prisons on November 21, 2011, doing their regular exercises around lunchtime, when they saw Moses on the roof of the penitentiary.

He jumped off the roof in the area near VINLEC’s headquarters in Paul’s Avenue, Kingstown, and escaped.

“… from my investigation, two prison officers were found culpable by way of negligence,” Charles told SEARCHLIGHT.

He, however, did not identify the two prison officers.

Well-placed sources have told SEARCHLIGHT that 37 prison wardens were on duty when Moses, who was on remand for the December 2010 murder of Layou resident Steven Badenock, escaped.

Charles said he has handed in his findings, and the Public Service Commission “is actually dealing with that”.

The two prison officers are currently on suspension, SEARCHLIGHT has confirmed.

Police believe that Moses murdered dental technician Ewart “Ells” King, who died from a stab wound inflicted by an intruder into his Pembroke home on December 4.

King’s gun was found in a van Moses had been travelling in just before police shot him.

Charles said that the likelihood of prisoners escaping has reduced since the incident.

“I know since then, the vigilance at the Prisons has been stepped up and I can say the chances of prisoners escaping now are much slimmer than it was before, bearing [in my mind] the fact that about half of them are being housed at Belle Isle,” he said in reference to the new correctional facility. (kentonchance@searchlight.vc)

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