Thursday, March 14, 2019
By NICO SCAVELLA
Tribune Staff Reporter
A jury’s request to visit the place in Bain Town where a 19-year-old was gunned down by police almost 10 years ago was put off by two weeks yesterday due to the unavailability of a key witness.
The visit to the exact spot on Hospital Lane where Bradley Newbold was killed in November 2010 was adjourned to March 29 after revelations that former police sergeant Trevor Green was out of the country.
Aside from the officer that killed Newbold - Corporal Ricardo Rolle - Mr Green was one of two eyewitnesses to the fatal shooting, the other being Newbold’s lifelong friend Ryan Fernander.
As a result, Coroner Jeanine Weech-Gomez said Cpl Rolle’s attorney Bjorn Ferguson insisted that Mr Green be present for the visit to the ‘locus in quo’, or scene of the event, as opposed to proceeding in his absence.
On November 20, 2010, Newbold was shot and killed by Cpl Rolle moments after he and Mr Green approached him, Mr Fernander, and Mr Fernander’s cousin as they sat on a wall at Hospital Lane.
According to Forensic Pathologist Dr Caryn Sands, Newbold died of two gunshot wounds to the torso.
His death sparked utter chaos and anarchy in the Bain Town community, events that would eventually come to be known as the “Bain Town riot”. Police officers and their vehicles were said to have been stoned by members of an angry mob and at least one car was set ablaze. Even news reporters covering the riot were said to be harassed by the angry mob.
Mr Green, now a teacher employed by the Ministry of Education, previously testified how on the date in question, he and Cpl Rolle, while on foot patrol on the area, approached three young men sitting on a wall, identified themselves and proceeded to search them in reference to firearms or drugs.
However, the former officer said after one of the men, who turned out to be Newbold, noticed the police badge pinned on his left chest, he jumped the wall and ran. Mr Green said Cpl Rolle, gave chase, and he followed suit.
During the foot chase, which Mr Green said lasted no more than a minute, Newbold clutched his waist and withdrew a black, Kel-Tec 9mm Luger pistol and aimed it at Cpl Rolle and himself. Mr Green said Cpl Rolle told the man to drop the weapon twice, commands that were not obeyed.
Then, he said he heard two gun shots, and later saw when Cpl Rolle fell on top of Newbold on top of a cesspit. By the time he caught up to them both, Mr Green said Newbold’s breathing was “laboured”.
Mr Fernander’s narrative of events differed, however.
He claimed that Mr Green and Cpl Rolle did not identify themselves as officers when they approached him, his cousin and Newbold as they sat on the wall.
Instead, he said the two officers, who came “out of nowhere” from the direction of King Street and who were wearing plain clothes, only issued the order “don’t move” to him and his companions.
Mr Fernander said he did as was told, as well as his cousin. Newbold though, opted to flee by jumping over the wall and running off, something Mr Fernander said he found to be “somewhat strange at the time.
Mr Fernander said the officers gave chase, prompting him and his cousin to move to a position where they could better see what was happening. He said at no time did he hear the officers giving any commands to Newbold.
Mr Fernander said when Newbold got shot, that prompted both him and his cousin to go to him. However, he said as they approached, one of the officers spun around, pointed his gun at them both and told them to turn back or he would shoot them both.
Mr Fernander said despite there being rumours at the time that Newbold had a gun, he did not see one.