Shawn Andre Weekes was arrested for the murder of Leo Callender 11 years after the incident.
Police officer Bernard Harte told the court he arrested the accused at the Grantley Adams International Airport and when asked why he “ran away from Barbados” Weekes said he always wanted to go to America.
This evidence came today as Weekes’ trial continued in the No. 3 Supreme Court before Justice Carlisle Greaves.
Weekes, formerly of the Crane, St Philip, is accused of the October 29, 2000 murder of Callender. The victim was 24 years old at the time of his shooting death which allegedly occurred at a shop in the Crane.
In October 2011, Harte, who is now Acting Superintendent of Police at Holetown Police Station, went to GAIA where he saw Weekes in a room. The officer presented the copy of the arrest warrant in his possession to him, explained it, and took him into custody, to which Weekes responded: “Me and *** never had any problems so why would I shoot him?”
A firearm, which was found at the residence of Jason Weekes, was shown to Shawn and he denied ever seeing the gun, suggesting it probably belonged to his brother Michael. According to evidence given by officer Denis Small, Shawn Weekes also lived at this residence.
At the police station, Harte questioned Weekes further and he denied shooting Callender and also seeing anyone with a gun on the date of the offence.
However, Weekes said he passed the area of the shop that day with his brother and another man but did not know of anything that happened. He admitted that his brother complained to him about Callender threatening to stab him while on a minibus.
When Harte asked Weekes why he “ran from Barbados” if he did not have anything to do with the matter, Weekes said he always wanted to go to America but maintained that he did not harm Callender. He further denied giving his brother a gun before leaving the island.
During cross-examination by Dr. Lenda Blackman, legal counsel for the accused, Harte explained why he had a copy of the arrest warrant and not the original saying he made a number of inquiries with regard to the original but it was never located. According to the officer, the matter originated in the Southern Division and was assigned to him when Weekes was apprehended and brought back to Barbados.
The police witness told the court that Weekes was apprehended in the USA, brought back by two agents, and then arrested by him at the airport just nine days shy of the 11th anniversary of the shooting incident.
Harte spoke of a faded arrest warrant on which he could only see the accused’s name in type but no endorsement was visible.
When Blackman asked if any fingerprint testing was done on the gun, Harte said the gun only came into his possession when he was assigned the case so he had no knowledge of fingerprinting.
Blackman asked Harte if he did not think he should have asked about finger testing on the gun but the officer said “no”.
“Not at the stage I came into the investigation at,” Harte replied, again alluding to the fact that the matter was assigned to him 11 years later.
Witness Station Sergeant Wayne Stuart told the court of his visit to the scene of the crime. He recalled seeing Callender lying on his back in pain before the paramedics took him away. The victim’s blood-stained clothes were given to a forensic scientist and Stuart spoke of seeing a piece of metal, what appeared to be a broken bottle, and a counter with a “deep grove” at the scene. Stuart also recalled participating in a search for Weekes but to no avail.
Acting Senior Superintendent of Police Graham Husbands, an expert witness, identified the .38 revolver and six rounds of ammunition he examined in relation to this matter while Police Inspector Denis Small said he assisted with the execution of a search warrant at the residence of Jason Weekes.
Blackman also raised questions regarding another person being charged with possession of the gun and Small said, at that time, he could not say that the gun was related to the Shawn Weekes matter.
It was at the home that the .38 revolver with the ammunition was discovered. However, Small said no photographs were taken of the gun at that time. He said the gun was tested for fingerprints but he couldn’t recall seeing the results or who did the testing.
Senior Crown Counsel Neville Watson is representing the Crown. The case continues tomorrow.