The coroner’s findings into the unnatural death of 12-year-old Shemar Weekes are finally in the hands of police, although the next step remains uncertain.
Acting Assistant Commissioner of Police Responsible for Crime Management Lybron Sobers today confirmed he had received the document yesterday, 42 days after Coroner Manila Renee ruled that there was sufficient evidence to suggest that a crime had taken place.
As a result, Renee said then she would send the case back to lawmen for further investigation, concluding that it was better suited to be handled by a criminal jurisdiction.
Sobers told Barbados TODAY this afternoon it was still too early to say what the next step would be, and he would first have to read the file to determine the way forward.
“I don’t know what instructions the Coroner may have, I don’t know what the Coroner is saying, so I can’t say what I will do,” he said when asked if the fact that the Commissioner of Police had handed over the file to him meant he needed to carry out further investigations into Weekes’ death.
The former Coleridge & Parry Secondary School student was found hanging at his Fryers Well, St Lucy home on May 14 last year, in a case the captured the nation’s attention in very much the same way the death of another child, six-year-old Jahan King would one month later.
A pathologist later ruled Shemar’s death a suicide, a conclusion that was shredded as a “fallacy” by the coroner when she delivered her verdict on Monday, August 22, 2016.
“The fallacy of the forensic pathologist’s opinion that the manner [in which Shemar died] was suicidal is evident in the case where a noose is placed around the head of a deceased person before realization of that action by the victim.
“Then there is the case where a person is tricked into putting a noose around their head, or perhaps during some sexual game . . . the fact there is a noose around somebody’s head and they died from asphyxia, does not mean it is suicide,” she emphasized at the time.
In analyzing the evidence of the child’s mother and stepfather, the magistrate was especially critical of the “discrepancies, inconsistences, contradictions and variations” regarding the circumstances surrounding his death, particularly the timeliness and the possibility of him being saved.