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Stabbing Accused Says He Acted In Self-Defence

By LAMECH JOHNSON ljohnson@tribunemedia.net THE Supreme Court murder trial of an Abaco resident will end today when the case is summed up and sent to the jury. After Justice Vera Watkins reviews the evidence given during the trial, Raheem McBride will learn whether a 12-member jury will convict him of murder, manslaughter by provocation or acquit him. Prosecution alleges that the accused is responsible for the September 13, 2010 stabbing death of Arah Brown. Initial reports indicated that the stabbing occurred after a fight broke out between the two at a house on Curry Lane, Murphy Town, shortly before 5pm. The deceased was taken to a local clinic where he was pronounced dead. During yesterday's proceedings, defence attorney V Alfred Gray and prosecutor Linda Evans gave closing statements to the jury in a final attempt to convince them to either acquit or convict the 19-year-old accused. Mr Gray told the jurors that his client had acted in self-defence where his life had been threatened. He asked them to consider the deceased attacking the accused first with a piece of wood, aiming for the skull based on his client's evidence and another key witness. To further argue his point, the defence attorney asserted that his client had picked up the knife dropped by the deceased, "swiped" him and ran. "There was no jooking going on," he told the court. However, in her closing statements to the court, prosecutor Evans asked the jury to think about the evidence given by Princess Margaret Hospital pathologist Dr Caryn Sands regarding the wound that killed the deceased. She recalled Dr Sands' testimony of the stab wound from a knife going four inches to the abdomen of the defendant going across and causing the bowels and intestines of the deceased to be visible. The wound, from Dr Sands' testimony, was not caused by a slash or swipe but by a stabbing and according to her experience, significant force is required to pierce the abdominal area because of the elastic skin tissue. As for being attacked and held down by the deceased, prosecutor Evans questioned how it was possible for the accused to be able to "duck" and "bend down" while being restrained by Brown as he had testified. Concluding, Ms Evans told the jury that excessive force was used in the accused defending himself, enough to warrant the charge of murder for which he was currently before the courts. Justice Watkins adjourned the matter to today, and will review the evidence before excusing the 12-member jury to return a verdict.

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