Relatives of 30-year-old father of one Gary Layne, who was found dead in a holding cell at the Arouca Police Station on Sunday, were left dumbfounded when results of a second independent autopsy revealed that two important bones at the base of his neck were missing.
The missing bones, according to relatives, hold the key as to exactly how Layne died and whether or not he really hung himself or there was “an outsider” involved.
The initial autopsy, which was conducted at the Forensic Science Centre in St James on Wednesday, revealed that Layne died from asphyxia due to hanging and added that there were no lacerations or bruises. However, with many questions hovering in the minds of relatives, Layne’s family decided to have a second autopsy done to get closure and answers, as they claimed he was not the type of person to harm himself.
The second autopsy was done at a funeral home in East Trinidad by Dr Hubert Daisley yesterday. Daisley expertise is in general pathology and forensic medicine and pathology.
A relative who did not want to be identified told Guardian Media yesterday that Daisley had some similar findings to the first autopsy but also found several inconsistencies. However, the relative admitted that Daisley could not conclude the examination as the two key bones in the area of Layne’s neck passageway were missing.
“I was told that key parts of his investigation which would be analysing hidden parts of the upper airway, which would be the trachea and the entire larynx, which would contain the cartilage, the trachea and other parts, as well as the hyoid muscle that is behind the tongue and the bone in the upper structure of where the Adam’s apple is, he said those two particular parts were missing upon investigation. He said he searched all of the organs, the containers, everything and those two parts are missing,” the relative said.
The Layne family had been told that Daisley will now send a letter to the Forensic Science Centre requesting that the missing parts be sent to him so that the second autopsy can be completed and the report signed off on.
“This would further conclude his investigation and analysis of the body and what actually happened,” the relative said.
“Why did the Forensic Science Centre keep those two specific parts if there was nothing wrong with it because we were told that nothing was wrong with the hyoid muscle and the larynx bone, so we would like to get it back to conclude the second autopsy’s findings.”
According to a police report, Layne, of Mausica, was placed in a holding in the Homicide Bureau of Investigations Region II section over the weekend. He had gone to report to the station on another matter but was detained and was waiting to be interviewed by investigators about an alleged conspiracy to murder and gang-related offences. However, officers who were checking on prisoners later found Layne unresponsive in the cell. He was taken to the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, Mt Hope, but was declared dead.
Crime scene investigators examined the cell and police concluded Laynel died by suicide.
However, a close relative told Guardian Media inconsistencies in the information they received from different officers who were on duty on the day and their knowledge of Layne character led them to believe differently.
“Gary was never the one to hurt himself. He loved his child and worked hard for her and would have never wanted to leave her in the world without a father,” the relative said.
The Laynes are now seeking legal advice on the matter.