The Coroner’s Inquest into the death of Grenadian-born Oscar Bartholomew is expected to commence today (Friday April 5) at the St. David’s Magistrate’s Court.
The 39-year old Bartholomew who was at the time visiting Grenada with his French-speaking Canadian wife, Dollette Cyr Bartholomew was allegedly beaten at the St. David’s Police Station at Petit Esperance on December 25, 2011, and subsequently died the following morning as a result of the injuries he sustained.
Five Police Officers were originally charged with Manslaughter in connection with Bartholomew’s death.
However, Justice Septimus Rudd who is based in Antigua ruled that the criminal charge be quashed to give way for a Coroner’s Inquest.
Justice Rudd’s ruling in effect paved the way for the Police Officers, 649 Edward Gibson, 675 Shaun Ganness, 237 Ruddy Felix, 748 Kenton Hazzard, and Rural Constable Wendell Sylvester to be reinstated, as well as given retroactive payment for the loss of income.
The men who were given bail in the sum of $100,000.00 each with two sureties to be secured by the deposit of original land title deeds, were suspended from the Royal Grenada Police force (RGPF) and placed on half month’s salary.
A member of the legal fraternity told THE NEW TODAY newspaper that Friday’s sitting of the Coroner will basically take care of housekeeping matters.
Summons would have been issued for all of the potential witnesses and for those who are likely to serve as jurors.
A Coroner’s Inquest has to be conducted in the presence of a jury panel comprising five persons.
The jury is tasked with the responsibility of determining if indeed someone is culpable for the death of Bartholomew.
During the inquest people including members of the deceased man’s relatives who have an interest in the matter can have someone represent them.
The five police officers are also entitled to have legal representation throughout the inquest.
A post-mortem conducted by pathologist, Dr. Nicholas Redhead concluded that Bartholomew died from trauma to the head with multiple skull fractures, subdual hemorrhage, and increased intracranial pressure.