Woman beaten to death

For three years, Tara Ram­nath had to sit on her wheel­chair and watch help­less­ly as a man kicked, cuffed and stamped his foot on her daugh­ter Leisha Ram­nath’s chest.

On Sun­day, that bru­tal­i­ty came to a fa­mil­iar yet trag­ic end when Leisha, 39, was found dead in their Clarke Road, Pe­nal home. It was on­ly on Wednes­day that an au­top­sy at the Foren­sic Sci­ence Cen­tre, St James, con­firmed sus­pi­cions that she was beat­en to death. It showed she suf­fered man­u­al stran­gu­la­tion and blunt force trau­ma to her head. Po­lice are now search­ing for the 48-year-old sus­pect who had left the area since her death on Sat­ur­day night.

Ram­nath, 71, lost both legs to di­a­betes. She told Guardian Me­dia yes­ter­day that she has been strug­gling to sleep since Sun­day as the sus­pect had made good on his threats to kill her daugh­ter and al­so promised to end her life.

“He said he would kill her and when he is done he would kill me and my son. He said he would kill me and throw me in the val­ley up the road,” Ram­nath said.

A rel­a­tive said the man was al­leged­ly last seen beat­ing Leisha around 8 pm at their home on the up­per lev­el of Ram­nath’s house. Leisha would usu­al­ly pre­pare break­fast but on Sun­day when she did show up, Ram­nath knew some­thing was wrong and sent her son Mukesh to check.

Mukesh said when he went up­stairs around 9 am he found his sis­ter ly­ing on a mat­tress in one of the bed­rooms. Her face was swollen and red and one of her feet was in the air. 

“My moth­er told me to tell her to come and eat a piece of roti down­stairs but I took my foot and touch she foot. She foot was up in the air. I hit her foot and it did not go down. It done get stiff. She didn’t use to stay there, but when the man done with she, like he drag she and put she there on a piece of sponge on the ground. She didn’t an­swer and she didn’t move. She face was red. I come back and told my moth­er ‘Look yuh daugh­ter dead,’” Mukesh said.

Pe­nal po­lice re­spond­ed to a re­port but the sus­pect was nowhere to be found. Be­fore he left, he took the dog, named Black Man, Leisha’s phone and pho­tographs. Al­though the po­lice have not been able to find him, res­i­dents said he has been seen pass­ing through the vil­lage.

Ram­nath said since meet­ing the sus­pect three years ago, Leisha had been sub­ject­ed to cru­el and in­hu­mane treat­ment where she would be beat­en every day. There were times when she would be dragged in­to the road­way and the bru­tal­i­ty would be put on dis­play for any­one pass­ing to see. With Ram­nath’s age and lack of mo­bil­i­ty, she said she was pow­er­less when the sus­pect dragged her on­ly daugh­ter in front of her to kick and cuff her in her face. He would al­so squeeze Leisha’s cheek­bone, push­ing the skin up to her eyes un­til it was swollen.

“Every­day, morn­ing and night he drag­ging her from up­stairs, bring­ing her in front here and beat­ing her up, stamp­ing on her chest. He used to shove her face, hold it and pull it,” she said.

Rel­a­tives said po­lice re­spond­ed to sev­er­al re­ports of do­mes­tic dis­tur­bances over the years but would on­ly warn the sus­pect. They said Leisha told him to go away on sev­er­al oc­ca­sions but he nev­er left. In­stead, he would beat her and threat­en her life. Neigh­bours were al­so afraid of him, as they al­leged he mur­dered his for­mer lover and got away. They said he is al­so be­fore the courts on as­sault charges for chop­ping one of Leisha’s friends. Neigh­bours said Leisha was un­em­ployed and the man would give her mon­ey in the ear­li­er times. They would al­so drink to­geth­er un­til drunk.

It was just Wednes­day that Po­lice Com­mis­sion­er Gary Grif­fith said there were no mur­ders for 2019 that re­sult­ed from do­mes­tic vi­o­lence. His com­ment came as he an­nounced that a Do­mes­tic Vi­o­lence Unit would be set up to two months.

- by Kevon Felmine

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