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Thursday 13 August, 2020

Police still investigating Ornella’s death

Shot and killed: Mother of five, Ornella Greaves

Shot and killed: Mother of five, Ornella Greaves

It has been just over a month since Ornella Greaves was fatally shot during protests near the Beetham Highway on June 30, however, no one has been held. 

Loop News was told that investigators are still acquiring statements from officers who were within sufficient proximity to the scene. 

On Monday, Commissioner of Police told reports at a press briefing that Greaves’ matter was still actively engaging the attention of the police, along with the killings of Joel Jacob, Israel Clinton and Noel Diamond, who were fatally shot in a confrontation with police on June 27. 

“Both matters are still being investigated, and the PCA (Police Complaint’s Authority) is driving it forward. We are in the process of acquiring the firearms of all the police officers on the scene as it pertains to that. But I give the assurance that these matters are being thoroughly investigated,” Griffith said. 

Greaves, a mother of five, was also pregnant at the time of her death. 

She was killed while attending a protest against police brutality on June 30. The protests took place following the deaths of the three men during a police exercise in Morvant, which followed an unrelated incident involving the death of a police officer. 

Witnesses claimed that Greaves had been killed by shots fired by officers, however Griffith himself, following the incident, came to the defence of his officers, noting that police had not found footage from any police vehicles, or otherwise, indicating that police were near the scene of the shooting. 

“We have found video footage, to show that when the unfortunate death of that lady in Beetham (occurred), we have video footage and you are looking around and there was absolutely no police officer or vehicle around that area for about three minutes until that person, until a police vehicle turned up.  So, what we had is that the public yet again putting two and two together and they get five,” Griffith said. 

In the footage being referenced, Greaves was seen on the ground, with people around her claiming the shooting had just happened. They then identified a police officer who was nearby, saying he was the only responsible. 

Relatives even told Loop News that Greaves' last words were to the officer were: ‘It was you who shoot me’. 

Initially, police said that at the time Greaves had been hit, they were shooting back at unknown persons who had shot at them. However, residents claimed officers at the scene at the time had randomly shot into the crowd, hitting Ornella in her hip. 

The PCA had subsequently announced it was conducting its own investigations into the incident. 

Any witnesses to or persons with information on this incident are asked to contact the PCA at 627-4383 / 627-4386 or at info@pca.org.tt. The PCA said all information provided will be treated as confidential. 

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