Acting Commissioner of Police, Winston James has confirmed that American Jessica Colker was raped by her alleged killer, Dave Martin Benjamin alias “Giant” or “Shuttle.”
The 27-year old Benjamin who is a landscaper of Coals Gap, St. David’s has been charged with capital murder in connection with Colker’s death.
Commissioner James called a media briefing last week Wednesday about the incident that occurred on January 24 at La Sagesse Beach in St. David’s, one day after Colker and her husband, Brian Melito arrived in Grenada with the intention of spending a one-week vacation at La Sagesse Nature Centre Resort in St. David’s.
“We believe that from the investigation so far that she was sexually assaulted”, he told reporters.
An autopsy concluded that Colker died as a result of extensive skull fracture and asphyxia, and according to Commissioner James, the Pathologist confirmed that she was also raped.
A source close to the police investigation confided to THE NEW TODAY newspaper that sperm-like secretion was seen on Colker’s vagina.
The source who preferred to remain anonymous said the 39-year old Assistant Physician was discovered dead close to a pond in the nearby mangroves by a police search party with her underwear partially pulled down.
She was wearing a black pair of swimsuit with a pink long-sleeves top.
The Acting Police Commissioner said Benjamin who is an ex-convict can be charged with rape but because of the nature of the offence, he believes the evidence will come out in court that Colker was raped.
This newspaper understands that the victim received a four-centimetre laceration on the right side of her head, abrasions to her neck, lower back and arm pits.
The couple was allegedly attacked while engaged in a leisure walk along the beach.
The source said they were approached by a man who was armed with a cutlass, who ordered them to follow him.
The individual allegedly refused to accept Melito’s bag pack that contained valuables that was offered to him, but instead asked the husband to run, and proceeded to hold on to the woman whom he pulled into the nearby bushes.
Benjamin, an ex-convict who was recently released from prison, voluntarily walked into the St. David’s Police Station along with his father, after a wanted man notice was released last week Monday by police.
According to Commissioner James, the suspect did not confess to the crime.
However, Benjamin was pointed out in a parade by a British visitor to the island as the person he had seen and had a brief conversation with along the beach moments before the attack on the couple.
The accused is currently held on remand at the Richmond Hill Prisons as the Preliminary Inquiry into Colker’s death has started at the St. David’s Magistrate’s Court.
The Acting Police Commissioner reiterated that Grenada remains a safe destination for visitors wanting to come to the country.
He reinforced his statement by providing the media with statistics relating to crime in recent years.
He said that in 2014 there were eight cases of murder and in 2015 the number had dropped to six reported cases of murder.