Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 8th 2015 Contents A6
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Tuesday, December 8, 2015
JENSEN LA VENDE
A male relative of 23-month-old
Khristha Knutt and her mother are in
police custody after the child was electro-
cuted in what police believe was a botched
attempt to resuscitate her.
Police have also arrested two teenagers
who were in the house at the time the child
According to police reports, the child was
electrocuted after the relative used live wires
to try to resuscitate her, after she was found
unresponsive around 2.30 am yesterday. He
reportedly cut the wires from a fan and
attempted to shock the child. When the
child was not revived she was taken to the
Port-of-Spain General Hospital, where she
was pronounced dead on arrival.
However, hospital sources said the child s
body was already cold when she was brought
in for treatment. The T&T Guardian was
informed that were it not for the suspicion
of the Casuality Department s House Officer,
Dr Janet Charles, the baby s death would
not have been fully investigated.
Sources said Charles noticed what
appeared to be scratches near the child s
nipples and overheard a mortuary attendant
saying that someone had tried to resuscitate
her at home. Charles examined the body
closer and saw what appeared to be rec-
tangular shaped impressions on the child s
chest. As a result, hospital authorities called
in the police and a forensic examination
A female relative who spoke with the
T&T Guardian at the Forensic Science Cen-
tre, St James, yesterday, said the child had
the cold and could not breathe properly.
She added that little Khristha, who lived
with her mother and other relatives at Rock
City, Laventille, stopped breathing at some
stage and relatives contacted the Emergency
The relative said they decided to try the
live wires in a bid to revive her and for a
period it seemed to be working as the child
was momentarily responding. However, the
child again fell unconscious.
Speaking with the media, however, the
child s grandmother, Marlene Rawlins, gave
a different version. Although admitting she
was not at the house when the child died,
Rawlins said for sometime she had a "gut
feeling" that something was wrong with
the home environment of the child, as little
Khristha would always run away from the
"That man is not the father. He s been
staying there for sometime but to me the
baby always crying and running away from
"If the baby afraid (of) you and running
from you, then you must see what going
on. I wasn t there so I don t know what
was going on. The report said it s like some-
one hit her like about three times but I don t
know because I wasn t there, that is what
the doctor said. It come like someone murder
her," Rawlins said.
According to the autopsy report, done by
forensic pathologist Dr Hughvon Des Vignes,
the child died as a result of blunt cranio
cerebral trauma and electrocution. Evidence
of injuries to three separate places to the
child s head was found. The child s brain
was also swollen and there was also evidence
of her choking on food.
"They kill my grandchild you know. Why
you electrocute my child? That s my grand-
daughter. I always tell my daughter I don t
want this man in my house because I was
always afraid he would abuse her. I got the
vibes. She would get vex when I tell her
that but this was what I was telling her,"
She added: "She with that man only four
months now. She barely knows that man
but I was praying last night for my grand-
daughter and my daughter came and told
me what happen. I told them I just hope
none of them killed my grandchild.
"I just talked plain. I will never feel good
about that. Especially in my house. You see
how life is. It s very sad."
Rawlins said she used to warn the child s
stepfather about his interactions with her
grandchild, telling him that whatever he
was doing to make the child be afraid of
him was "not good in the eyesight of the
"I just sorry for my granddaughter to see
she had to go through this," Rawlins said.
The People s National Movement (PNM) has retained
the two electoral districts contested in yesterday s local
government by-elections in Arima and Tunapuna.
Up to 8 pm, preliminary results showed the PNM get-
ting more than 1,200 votes to the UNC s 29 in the
Malabar South district. The eligible voters in that district
were close to 4,000 and in Auzonville/Tunapuna district
the PNM got more than 2,514 votes to the UNC s 327.
There were about 11,000 eligible voters in that district.
The PNM candidates were former Arima Borough
Corporation CEO, Merlyn Calliste (Malabar/South) and
Travis Williams for the Auzonville/Tunapuna electoral
The United National Congress (UNC) candidates were
Dara Singh and Lauren Kanhai.
There was an expected low voter turnout. Polls opened
at 6 am and closed 12 hours later.
It was a very low-keyed campaign with Prime Minister
Dr Keith Rowley addressing two meetings in support of
the respective PNM candidates on the eve of the polls.
There was no major public meeting hosted by the UNC
as it had national executive elections two days before.
Many polls predicted victory for the PNMs. The by-
elections were triggered after former PNM councillor
Anthony Garcia, who represented Malabar South and
Esmond Forde, who represented Auzonville/Tunapuna,
resigned to contest the September 7 general election for
Arima and Tunapuna respectfully.
Garcia is now the Minister of Education and Forde
is the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives.
Local government elections are due next year and the
Local Government Minister Franklin Khan has already
said the polls would be held in November next year. ---
See Page A10
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Man electrocutes baby in botched revival effort
Angry granny wants justice
Ernest Knutt, 45, biological father of
toddler Khristha Knutt, is calling for justice as
he believes that there was more to his child's
Knutt, who live at Five Rivers, Arouca,
appeared on CNC3's Crime Watch show last
evening. He told host Ian Alleyne he was
contacted at about 3 am by hospital officials
and later told his
daughter died after a
relative used 110 voltage
live wires to try to
resuscitate her after she
was found unresponsive.
"This is all too strange
because the mother, I
believe, was not telling
me everything. I felt
there was something
more to it when the
grandmother said that
someone has to pay for this. I really want to
know what went on with my child," he said.
Knutt said when Khristha was six months
old he separated from her mother but always
kept a close relationship with his child.
He said he was imprisoned for seven years
and was released in 2010 and since the birth
of his sixth child, Khristha, he had turned his
life totally around from the life of crime.
"My daughter make me change. I left all
things behind because of her and now for her
to go like this ... I need answers," Knutt said.
Marlene Rawlins at the Forensic Science
Centre, St James, yesterday.
PHOTO: SHIRLEY BAHADUR
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