RHONDOR DOWLAT-ROSTANT

Four days after a 41-year-old murder suspect was sent to the St Ann’s Mental Hospital for a psychiatric evaluation, the woman made a daring escape from the institution early on Monday morning.

Her escape was short-lived though, as it only lasted some ten minutes before she was recaptured a short distance away, along a track leading to the Botanical Gardens in St Ann’s.

According to a police report, at about 5 am staff were making their usual rounds when they realised that the woman was not in the ward where she was being kept for evaluation.

Police from the Port-of-Spain CID and Task Force were notified, and an immediate search was launched.

The suspect, however, was recaptured within minutes.

Police received information that she was expected to be picked up by a relative.

The woman is said to be back at the institution but is now under heavy police guard.

On Friday evening, the woman was taken into police custody for questioning after she was found near the body of her dead husband, John Smith, at their Catalina Courts home at Saddle Road in Maraval.  Following questioning, she was sent to the St Ann’s Mental Hospital for psychiatric evaluation.

Investigators said they found her to be uttering strange things and after consultation with their legal team, the Police Service decided to send the woman to the St Ann’s Hospital for evaluation.

An autopsy is yet to be conducted on John Smith’s body.

70-year-old John Smith, Chairman of Maritime General and Fidelity Finance, was killed on Friday afternoon during a domestic dispute with a female relative.

The Police Service’s Victims and Witness Support Unit is also said to be providing counselling and intervention at this time, as the ordeal was said to have been witnessed by two minors.

According to a police report, at about 4:30 pm on Friday 23rd July, a party of officers responded to a report of a disturbance at Catalina Courts, Saddle Road in Maraval.

Upon their arrival, the first responders allegedly saw the suspect lying next to Smith who appeared to be motionless. The woman reportedly made certain utterances which arose the officers’ suspicion, and they later arrested her pending further investigation.

Detectives from the HBI Region One, who took lead of the investigation, interrogated the 41-year-old suspect at the Central Police Station, Port-of-Spain, until the decision was made to send her for a psychiatric evaluation.

It was during the interrogation that the suspect made strange utterances, and the consultation made thereafter.

PC Martin, of the HBI Region One, is continuing investigations.