Victoria Town residents angry at mob killing verdict
Patrick Matthias, brother-in-law of Chieftin Campbell, who was beaten by a mob in Mandeville and later succumbed to his injuries, said hearing news that the cab driver charged with his death was set free has caused him to relive the trauma of the...
Patrick Matthias, brother-in-law of Chieftin Campbell, who was beaten by a mob in Mandeville and later succumbed to his injuries, said hearing news that the cab driver charged with his death was set free has caused him to relive the trauma of the murder.
Matthias, popularly known in the community as ‘Chike’, said Campbell, 62, was everything to him.
Six months after the May 6 brutal beating along Manchester Road, Matthias says he still cannot come to grips with his friend and brother-in-law’s death.
“There is not a day weh we nuh see each other. Right now, him woulda deh right here so now. Him woulda drive on right now,” he said in a Gleaner interview in Victoria Town, Manchester.
Taxi operator Orlando Powell, who was implicated in the mob killing, was freed of murder last Wednesday.
The charge against Powell was dismissed after Parish Judge Monique Harrison found that there was insufficient evidence linking Powell to the murder.
An angry Matthias said the community stands united in deploring the verdict.
“I just see say the system almost fail right there. You can’t have mob killing and then you a go hold one man and a nuh one man deh pon di video.
“So mi tell di people dem say nothing nah go come out o’ it because there is no way one man a go down fi a mob killing,” he said.
Matthias is perplexed to this day that no one could have intervened to break up the brawl and save his brother-in-law’s life.
Heartbroken, Matthias walked away during the interview and started sobbing uncontrollably. Looking on helplessly and at our concerned stares, one of his friends said: “He will be all right. He just misses him.”
Pointing to a domino table in front of the shop, the friend said that Campbell would go there every night to play the game.
Anthony Edwards, another man from the community, said that he and others felt “cut up” about the judge’s ruling.
He believes that justice has not been served.
‘Miss Florence’, another resident of Victoria Town, is also displeased that no one has been held accountable for Campbell’s death.
“I’m hurt, man. I feel offended. Somebody must pay the price. That man nuh trouble nobody,” she said of Campbell, who she had known for five years.
As for Matthias, the verdict has opened up old wounds, leaving him awash with tears. He is also peeved about the sharing on social media of video of the deceased man’s pockets being emptied by a thief.