Convicted manslayer Adrian Michael Black was today described by three people, including a university professor, as non-violent, kind-hearted and friendly.
In fact, Mohammed Bhula, Professor Pedro Welch and Lavonne Goodman, all said they were in shock when they heard that Black had been charged with murder.
The character witnesses were giving evidence today in the No. 5 Supreme Court before Madam Justice Pamela Beckles.
Black, 34, of Thompson Gap, Codrington Hill, St Michael, had previously pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the stabbing death of Victor Husbands on June 29, 2020.
Bhula told the court he met the convicted man in 2007. He said Black would regularly attend the mosque in Kensington New Road where he held services.
He described Black as a “kind and considerate” man.
“He was a friend and we also had a student-teacher relationship. He was present when I got married and even during his time of incarceration he would call me a week prior to our anniversary to remind me that the date was coming up,” Bhula said.
He said he was in a state of shock when he heard that Black had been involved in a killing.
“I was shocked because that’s not the Adrian that I know. To hear something of that nature was really, really shocking…He was not one to get in confrontation,” he explained.
Professor Welch told the court he met Black as he used to attend the Breath of Life Seventh Day Adventist Church.
He disclosed that he had known him for “10 years or more” and described him as a “troubled man” and “a young man with a varied personality”.
He said Black looked up to him as a mentor and he guided him mentally and socially.
Professor Welch said Black was always in search of knowledge and expressed frustration that he did not have the opportunities that other people had.
He said Black was neither confrontational nor violent, but was argumentative and would get angry if he was mistreated or insulted.
The other witness, Goodman, who works in Bush Hall, St Michael, said Black would visit her regularly and enquire about job opportunities.
She described him as a “funny and quiet person”, who was also friendly and unassuming.
Goodman said she still got cold bumps up to this day whenever she thinks about Black’s unlawful act.
“I never had reason to believe that he was a violent person,” she noted.
When he was given the opportunity to speak, Black issued a short apology.
“I apologize to the court and to the family of the deceased,” he said.