Its February 19, 2014 – courtroom 2, Supreme Court, Downtown Kingston.
Jeremy Taylor, lead prosecutor gets ready to continue his closing submissions to the jury in what must be the biggest case for him as a prosecutor. There are barricades on the outside to get through. Body scanning machines are being used at the entrance to the Supreme Court as police increase their presence in and around the court.
Mr. Taylor is cool. He, like other lawyers, has not been scanned. They are officers of the court. He readies him. Its 10:50 AM. The jury box is full, so too is the prisoners’ dock. Mr. Taylor gets ready to begin and perhaps reminds himself of the yawning juror who forced him to end his address earlier than he’d planned yesterday. Mr. Taylor begins.
Here are my verbatim notes, as I am able to capture. Errors are mine, not Mr. Taylor’s.
Madam Foreman and Your Members, it occurred to me yesterday that although we’ve been together for approximately 3 months – having started the 18th of November, 2013 we have never introduced the prosecution team. Perhaps if you were when this is over, see me on the road and want to vent about something, it is only right that you should know my name – I am Jeremy Taylor and this is Dayton Morris – in the event you want to direct your anger at any of us.
I stand in the shoes but not heels of the Director of Public Prosecutions of counsel who is seated here.
(DPP Paula Llewellyn QC has appeared in court several days of the trial to give moral support to her team on the prosecution benches. Palmer continues – without the heels of course)
We don’t ask you to return a verdict of guilty or such concoctions but to hold persons accountable. In this exercise, the office of DPP is the office which requires that persons must give an account as to their actions and the allegations against them. We play no part in rendering judgment.
Again I want to remind you when I closed yesterday – I told you the evidence of all 5 must be considered separate. I say this as it is quite possible in the addresses to come you will hear a lot about evidence which touches and concerns Palmer alone. There’s a view that if Palmer sinks, all should sink with him. That is not so!
It is quite possible, you heard about cell evidence that persons were at Andrews or Plantation Heights at some time. That concerns only that person. Even when you hear that you still have to come back and say they are saying so and so was in that cell site but where was Mr. St John? You must come back to it.
The three person Jones, Williams and St. John – even of you are to consider evidence that Campbell was shown to be headed back to St. Catherine, that doesn’t mean Jones, Williams and St. Jones get the benefit.
This case is not about if Palmer sinks all sink. There are 5 cases against all and they must be all considered separately. In addition learned senior counsel Finson said you are in a moral dilemma in having to rely on the evidence presented here. You are in no moral dilemma at all. You will only be in a moral dilemma if you are saying 5 are guilty but you are not sure of method used by state to gather evidence. That doesn’t arise here.
Even if it’s a matter of law the pronouncing of innocence of some kind is a moral choice but not a dilemma.
The other thing I am going to ask you to is to approach the case with – you are required to weigh the evidence – two scales not one like an ordinary tradesman. Based on how you weigh the evidence you determine its purity – Whether it’s like a rotten cabbage that’s green outside and stink on inside.
Take the evidence and assess the credibility of the witness – is it reliable – logical, consistent, or is it mix up and the witness change in the story all the time. Do aspects match up. Does it point and flow or is it scatter shot. All of these you put into consideration when assessments and evaluations of the evidence are being done – not only for crown as evidence has been lead by at least one of accused. Palmer called evidence on his behalf. Evaluate it in same matter.
The accused have all stayed where they are and have spoken. Your Lordship will tell you, it is not evidence, it a lesser species but you must still consider it because it’s a right they have which the Privy Council has expressed surprise that it has survived 21st century in Jamaica but it’s a right they have.
Learned Counsel Finson said if you were put in the position where you were arrested and charged and all things evidence put against you – conspiracy misconduct on part of the case. I am coming back to balance. How would you feel if family member of yours was taken and killed and you had some evidence that someone did it? Would you also not want an accounting, someone to answer. Would you not want to know what became of your family member?
Yesterday counsel was filtering it through the prism of the accused. There was nobody here to filter for Clive Williams. Only his sister came. Don’t you think she deserves explanation about her brother’s death?
Just because a person is accused but presumed innocent, in this court scales of Justice are for all. Just as the accused deserve a fair trial, the death of anyone deserves a fair accounting. I ask you to reject that you must only put your self in the shoes of accused. In fact you are here not to wear anybody’s shoes.
When they ask you to put on shoes it is to get away from the direction of the judge – which is to have no sympathy and no bias. That’s not what I am asking you to do. When you took the oath that’s what you swore to do. We are not going to ask you about could have, should have. That will leave you to speculation. Speculation is a village in St. Elizabeth and we are not driving you there!
(Jurors chuckle- so too the rest of the court – Speculation moment)
We started this case November 20, 2013 by telling you about circumstantial evidence – that is evidence of fact from which you are asked to use your reason to infer further facts. The traditional case in court you would have direct evidence usually to say I saw when dem kill di man …I saw when dem poison the man, I saw when dem stab the man…you do not have that in this case. This case is about a series of facts we are asking you to look at and say :
– Clive Williams is dead
– One or all or some of these persons are responsible – that is Circumstantial Evidence.
You have to look at the evidence as a whole. You can’t pick it apart. It’s like a rope composed of several chords.
The province of law is the learned trial judge.
Other issues here are – common design
This case is a Common Design case. In any Common Design case the allegation is that one or more participated in the criminal act another. In any Common Design case you have to look at scope of the Common Design. What is it that was agreed to do?
Here – the scope was to kill Clive Lloyd Williams for the loss of a firearm. The law of Common Design is – as long as you participate knowing that was the ultimate end it doesn’t matter that you didn’t pull trigger; it doesn’t matter that you didn’t wield the knife; it doesn’t matter that you didn’t administer the poison.
Common Design can encompass a person at a gate as look out man for the police. As long as he’s there to look out, he can be charged for murder
Here, if you deliver a person knowing they are going to die and you ‘cut’ after, you are part of a Common Design. You will soon see evidence against one such person here.
Also consider here – good character. Two of these persons have raised good character. Palmer has – by calling his sister and although Campbell hasn’t done same by calling someone, he’s put into evidence that he’s highly trained and was a good worker. None of the others have put good character in issue.
When good character is put in issue, that says ‘I am the kind of person who could never do that’ or as we would say ‘a lie dem a tell pon me’. Also because he’s a good person , he could never do that – he does not have the propensity to do that.
You have heard how Mr. Palmer was kind to his family – Bought car for his father, house for his mother. You are also entitled to ask if in all of his 38 yrs he could not find someone to come and give character evidence on his behalf. No mother would say his child is a murderer.
You can rely on his sister or reject it. You should ask could there not have been someone else? For all the gathering of Gaza – gazaites and gazelles – no one out of Gaza could come and speak from him. Not even Gaza from Middle East that Mr. Lorne has a fixation with.
I am not sure where good character goes in this case.
From the start you heard that Clive Lloyd Williams before he died had a matter before the gun court for which he was on bail. You heard Clive Williams locked gun. You heard Lamar Chow who was a member of Gaza also locked gun and you have heard that locked these guns on behalf of Mr. Palmer. Where is good character going? But it is still a consideration you have to deal with. The judge will direct you on that. It has also been the prosecution case that Clive Williams, although he didn’t deserve to die, is not a saint. At the time he was to face a trial for his own crimes. Now he can’t face that tribunal.
Likewise Lamar Chow – he only locks guns – still an illegal act. But what you have here is someone who was inside the organization coming to speak about the operation and the death of Clive Williams. And he has said Clive Williams is dead because of missing gun.
There are no saints here. No Sunday school here. No hands washed. All here are people who walked and traversed the forest of the underworlds….there’s balance.
The other issue is identification – I see identification of Lamar Chow and voice identification made by Lamar Chow of these persons. When you come to consider the I see evidence of Lamar Chow – you should consider, what time of day did he see these persons, the lighting, did Lamar Chow see the face of any of them, if he saw face, how long, …in any event if the witness hasn’t said how long, that’s not the end of matter because you can go by the witness’ narrative of what was happening. Did he have enough opportunity to see the face? Then look at distance – how close or far was he from them. Then because it was not easy situation operating on the mind of Lamar Chow in difficult circumstances so that he is mistaken.
Also recognition – Were they strangers to him or known to him before. If you know someone before would it take him same time to recognize them.
We have the same thing regarding voice identification – for how long were they known. Could he recognize them based on length of time. This is particularly relevant as regards Shane Williams. Is Lamar Chow’s identification of voice of Shane Williams proper having regard to all the circumstances of the case.
3507418 -a DIGICEL phone is alleged as Palmer’s
PIN – 244bae16 LIME phone -Palmer’s
When you go into deliberations you have to say whether you find these were his. You have to assess messages and call data regarding those.
There is a contest between the Crown and Defence on them. But these matters are not in issue:
(a) August 16, 2011 – Lamar Chow, Adidja Palmer, Shawn Campbell and Andre St John, were all at 7 Swallowfield Ave.
(b) AP was bitten by a dog at 7 Swallowfield Ave.
(c) Regarding Shawn Campbell – we know that Clive Williams was in Havendale on August 16, 2011 – in his statement from the dock, Shawn Campbell said Lizard followed him to Havendale on that day
(d) Telephone number – 2899664 belonged to Lamar Chow;
(e) Telephone number – 5710021 belonged to Clive Williams (Lizard)
(f) Telephone number – 3824835 belonged to Onika Jackson (Lizard’s girlfriend)
(g) Telephone number – 5842183 belonged to Shawn Campbell – that one came out in cross of Constable Shawn Brown
(h) Telephone number – 8445320 – belonged to Shawn’s Campbell child’s mother – that was put by Lorne (the attorney for Shawn Campbell) to Constable Shawn Brown – when he wanted to show that the police were part of conspiracy – so it came out on cross part of Defence that these numbers belonged to Shawn and his girlfriend. You remember the police said she was a beautiful girl? Shows that Shawn Campbell has great taste in women
Madam Foreman and your members – this is like a story with a prologue and an epilogue. We are at the epilogue which you will determine how it ends. No matter how it ends, someone will be leaving here unsatisfied. If you go to the prologue of case you must go back to August 14, 2011 – the events there provide motivation for how people behave on August 16, 2011.
You have people coming on the stage, coming off, coming on, and coming off.
Aug 14 you have headliner – Adidja Palmer. Opening act, Shawn Campbell. We also see appearances by supporting characters Clive Williams and Lamar Chow. We also see Stephanie Brackenrige – sister of Clive Williams – she was the second witness for prosecution. She’s known as Nadine. You heard her describe the close relationship with her brother. That it was unusual for him not to be in contact with her. You recall August 14, 2011- the distress she observed on Clive Williams. She described how he rushed into house frightened until she gave him and Lamar Chow money to leave Waterford. Lamar Chow goes further and tells you who was on the phone to Clive Williams.
In fact as the phone was on speaker he spoke with a voice he recognized as Kahira Jones, interceding with Palmer regarding his guns. Mr. Jones told him it would be alright, don’t worry. If that was the only thing on that day it would be alright. But on August 14, 2011 you had bb message
‘yow call dem pussy deh and tell dem say mi want me shoes by 8’.
That is not the only message on August 14, 2011. Trying to satisfy daddy and teacher these authoritative titles – Clive Willaims sent a text on 14 August, 2011 about 3:09 in afternoon saying
‘Daddy a lickle ting gwaan. Me and Wee really want talk to you’
Sounds like a wayward child approaching his father in fear.
Clive Williams was sending message to Adidja Palmer, me and Wee –which is Lamar Chow want to speak with you. You have Miss Brackenridge, bb message and words of supplication from Clive Williams on the 14th of August 2011.
It doesn’t end there as on the same 14th of August 2011, Mr. Palmer is sending voice notes one
‘hombre den you nuh know say bloodclaat Lizard and Wee ago call mi phone and tell …by eight o’clock’.
That is what Mr. Palmer said on 14th of August. Put that voice note manipulation. You heard accused speak and it is the same you heard. His voice is the centre of his trade. Same voice on note is said voice from the dock.
And the voice note about bloodclaat calls made by bloodclaat Lizard and Wee (judge laughs at this) you had Adidja Palmer making a call to Clive Williams on the 14th August at 3:47PM for 3 minutes and 47 seconds.
Another call on the 14th August, 2011 at – 3:51PM – Adidja Palmer spoke to Clive Williams for over 4 minutes. Is it that all of this has been stitched together by police – the same police who never had personnel to send to Swallowfield…but it is the Defence no matter how fanciful it sounds.
So Mr Palmer calling Clive Williams – Clive Willaims was not the only one calling. Mr. Palmer. Lamar Chow also called Adidja Palmer and he called him 3:58PM on August 14, 2011 and again in afternoon at 4:51.
Look at the calls between Clive Williams and Adidja Palmer. Because if you were to follow the statement of Adidja Palmer (here Mr. Taylor reads part of Kartel’s unsworn statement) – what Mr. Palmer is saying is I don’t really know this man. He’s a stranger to me. But yet you have him not only getting calls from Clive Williams, you have him making calls to Clive Williams and in his profanity ridden tirade – that sound like a man who know who he was talking to. It shows familiarity and recognition but that is matter for you to determine whether the statement from the dock which is not evidence is true.
(Court breaks for jurors to stretch their legs as Tom Tavares Finson raises with the judge reports that family members of Kartel had been denied entry to the courtroom while family members of the alleged deceased had no such challenge. The defence team were dissatisfied with Justice Campbell’s handling of the matter so when the break ended, there were still rumblings – Taylor rises to continue and realizes jurors are distracted)
Taylor – Please ignore the side rumblings and give me your attention.
August 14, 2011 – we are still on the prologue and dealing with the anxiety of Chow and Clive Williams and the loss of these shoes so to speak. These shoes are not NIKE, Adidas or Puma. In the scheme of things of this trial they are not Clark’s. In context of this case and events that lead to murder, shoes mean gun.
I am fortified in the view that shoes mean guns because I never heard of one pop shoes yet. I have heard of pop dung shoes – but not one pop. In the Voice Note this is what Adidja Palmer says –
‘no haffi seh nuttn bad man … Go mek some one pop and mek we hear and go kill two a dem ‘
In the context of that Voice Note can you really say of August 14, 2011 when Adidja Palmer was speaking of shoes he wasn’t speaking about shoes. You are Jamaicans.
We are still on the 14th of August – still anxious days. Clive Williams is flapping and decrying like a fish out a water. His 8 o’clock deadline is approaching.
(As prosecutor Taylor makes his closing submission to the jury, he cocks his left foot on the bench – he is charge and he wants to show it. He makes reference to a play now that I regret I have never heard about and while making note of his foot on the bench, I miss the start of his Dr. Foster play. He continues)
Just as Clive Williams was looking at his clock and can’t provide shoes and then Foster gives these words – slowly comes the forces of the might. Deadline provided, shoes can’t find, Kartel vex, Kartel a cuss, two a dem ago DEAD, distressing his sister so much so his sister sought to give him an avenue of escape. She gave him money and drove him and told him in essence – get out of Waterford.
This is still the prologue – you have heard that both Lamar Chow and Clive Williams returned. But go back to 14th of August, 2011 – his life is in danger. What must I do? Between 8:08-8:15PM Clive Williams made a series of frantic calls to Adidja Palmer – None of which were answered. Williams is called repeatedly. He was not the only one calling. 8:16PM that night – 16 mins after the deadline – Lamar Chow is also calling Adidja Palmer.
You have heard again that this is a conspiracy – with such evangelical fervor that you almost want to shout amen or awoah when he was finished. So is Stephanie Barckenrigde a part of conspiracy? Police told her to go police station and report her brother missing?
(Incidentally, Stephanie Brackenridge now sits right next to me as I take full notes of prosecutor Taylor closing submissions. She notes with approval most of the points made by Taylor)
Between corporate area and Portmore about 23 dead bodies found – is that a part of the conspiracy. Because when all is said and done we must come back to first question – is Clive Williams dead?
On August 16, 2011 the accused man said
‘we chop us Lizard fine fine’ …
The finality of it that those who could see and hear about it would learn. This was an object lesson. You don’t mess with Adidja Palmer property. You heard on the Voice Note I going to kill two a dem bloodclaat
(Judge chuckles again)
He showed such contempt for both Clive Williams and Lamar Chow – so on August 14, 2011, Clive Williams is still trying to reach out to man he describes as ‘daddy’. This is the reverse of the story of the prodigal…the prodigal was damned and to die in this case. The prodding with the shoes, guns and nothing he could do would satisfy him.
You ever wonder – why they never just beat him up and tek money why they had to kill him. If they had beaten him up none of us would be here. But was it decided Clive Willaims had to die. Now on the 15th August 2011 day after – you get calls from Adidja Palmer to Clive Williams at 10:28 in night Adidja Palmer is calling Clive Willaims; 10:35PM Adidja Palmer is calling Clive Williams; again at 11:03-11:07 Adidja Palmer is calling Clive Willaims.
So much for not knowing Lizard. So much for saying this is only a man I see when Storm carrying him to stage show. Lamar Chow and Clive Williams – were supposed to have left Waterford but they came back – on the evidence they had 3,000 – not sure how far that would have taken them.
But the hopelessness of the situation that made it difficult to run. Palmer exemplifies hopelessness of them running –
‘ but if dem cut, weh dem a raasclaat gu….if dem cut Shawn a go buy it back ‘.
Remember he’s a man of power and influence – he has the title Teacha and one that he equates with a Lord God Almighty – WORL BOSS. Where would Lamar Chow and Clive Williams go. He is alter all god almighty. No third world in Waterford. Can you see hopelessness why they thought they could convince him otherwise.
So on the 14th Stephanie Brackenridge and Lamar Chow speak about what happened and phone records bear that out. This is a police conspiracy? That is the Defence you have to consider it. But I really want you to reject it.
(There is a reference here to a bronze statue in Daniel with the feet of clay….but I didn’t catch it all. Mr. Taylor moves now to August 16, 2011.)
August 16, 2011
This is day for which the Crown indicted all 5 accused
The indictment reads – Adidja Palmer, Shawn Campbell, Andre St. John, Kahira Jones, Shae Williams – on or about the 16th August, 2011 in parish of St Andrew murdered Clive Williams. The indictment is just a charge sheet.
You will recall that shoes still needed to be accounted for. Lamar Chow came and spoke about how Shawn Campbell pressure them to go and see Kartel on that day. When Shawn Campbell in his statement from the dock which is not evidence puts it’s innocuously that Lizard followed me to Havendale, nutten nuh gu so. But you see why Adidja Palmer was pressuring to …Shawn Storm haffi gu buy it back. He himself has to give an account why them two lost the gun so he pressured to go to Havendale. The state of mind of Shawn Campbell is very interesting on that day.
Remember the relationship they had – Shawn Campbell, Lamar Chow, Clive Williams were three good friends – so much so on Shawn Campbell’s birthday Lamar Chow said ‘bless up you strong Siva’ while he was here giving evidence. They had a close relationship. Palmer said he only encountered him with Shawn Campbell.
This betrayal of brothers is not equal to betrayal of Jesus but of Joseph betrayed by his brothers. But Lizard got a one way trip to Egypt – can’t come back -sell him put for guns ss he didn’t want to be responsible.
Lamar Chow is cousin to Shawn’s girlfriend. Shawn Campbell’s crime is the worst. His is the worst. Lamar Chow and Clive Williams were strangers to Palmer. But Shawn Campbell man – when push come to shove he helped put them under the bus.
(Taylor to continue)