Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 19th 2015 Contents Minimum wage still to be reviewed --- McLeod News --- Page A6
Wednesday, August 19, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
for 18TH AUGUST, 2015
The sudden death of a 14-year-old girl
yesterday left an entire village in Wallerfield
While police and relatives both concluded
that Natesha James, of Jacob Hill, died early
yesterday morning from complications arising
from epilepsy, residents alleged a more sinister
cause may have led to her eventual death.
According to police reports, James was last
seen alive at her home on Monday night.
Her mother, Natalie Jervais, told police
when she arrived home after attending a
prayer group meeting, she saw her daughter
fighting with her one-year-old sister.
She claimed she separated the feuding sib-
lings and scolded them. However, shortly after
they resumed and the mother reportedly again
intervened. However, she said this time she
decided to punish the teenager with a guava
whip beating before sending her to bed.
But Jervais said minutes after returning to
her bedroom she heard strange noises coming
from the kitchen and went to check and found
the teen lying unconscious on the floor. James
was taken to the Arima Health Facility where
she was pronounced dead on arrival.
The teenager's parents were later detained
by police for questioning but later released
after an autopsy performed at the Forensic
Science Centre, St James, revealed she had
choked on her own vomit while in the midst
of an uncontrollable epileptic fit.
However, even after hearing the results of
the post mortem, which also showed James
had no marks of violence on her body, several
of the family's neighbours alleged the teen
was constantly beaten.
"They always beating them children all
hours of the night. I hear the child crying
late last night but I only realise what went
on when I see the police and the ambulance,"
a neighbour who asked to remain unidentified
said when interviewed by the T&T Guardian
Another neighbour corroborated the claim
as she alleged that both children received
almost nightly beatings.
Their claims were denied by relatives of
the family who were forced to form a human
barricade in front of their front gate to prevent
a mob of neighbours, mostly female, from
storming into the property late yesterday
while the T&T Guardian was at the house.
The boisterous group was eventually forced
to disperse to their homes after police were
summoned back to the scene to quell the
disturbance around 8 pm last night.
"If the child was being abused as they say,
why they didn't do something and call the
police long time," a sobbing relative said as
she claimed that the allegations were a ploy
by neighbours to force the family out the
Some 200 workers were
left on the breadline yes-
terday after a fire destroyed
the popular Hearty Foods
Supermarket at the corner
of Sorzano and Pro Queen
Ashley's Bed, Bath and
Beyond, which was on one
of the upper floors of the
property, was also destroyed
by the blaze.
According to police
reports, passers-by noticed
the building was on fire
around 4 am and immedi-
ately notified the police and
ACFO Joseph, ASPs Wor-
rell and Dominique, acting
Sgt Ghan, Fire Prevention
Officer Armstrong and
other officers visited the
scene and fought for several
hours to bring the blaze
under control. They could
not save the businesses in
the main building but man-
aged to save other nearby
In a telephone interview
yesterday, owner of Hearty
Foods Ishwar Maharaj said
he would be seeking alter-
native employment for his
workers until he was able
to reestablish his business.
"It's about 200 workers
and we will be looking for
some places for them. We
will rebuild bigger and bet-
ter," he said.
Maharaj said he did not
how much losses he had
suffered but police said the
building alone was insured
for some $100 million.
Up to late yesterday,
members of the Fire Pre-
vention Unit were attempt-
ing to determine the source
of the blaze.
Investigations are con-
"They just trying to cause trouble within the com-
munity. Everybody know my uncle and aunty is good
people. Nobody crying more than my aunty now," one
of James' cousins said.
Detectives of the Region Two Homicide Bureau are
Residents turn on relatives of dead teen
Girl choked on vomit---autopsy
200 on breadline as
fire guts Hearty Foods
Hearty Foods Supermarket owner Ishwar Maharaj speaks to employees during an emergency meeting hours after his business
was destroyed by fire in Arima, yesterday. PHOTO: ABRAHAM DIAZ
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