By LAMECH JOHNSON
Tribune Staff Reporter
THE tour guide who took nine cruise ship visitors on Segways through a trail in Earth Village said it never crossed her mind that they were about to be robbed when a man walked out of the bush with a gun.
Edena Farah told a jury that she “almost” thought the man was a part of the Caribbean Segway Tour, because of how “easily” he walked out of the bush.
“It didn’t register until he put the gun in my face and said, ‘Get the f* down’,” the court heard from the young woman.
The witness recalled how the robber grabbed her and threw her to the ground, gun-butted her in the back of the head, and fired two shots into the ground between her legs.
Frederick Green, 30, of Carmichael Road and Dekota Von Lockhart, 24, of Churchill Avenue, face six counts of armed robbery and three counts of receiving.
It is claimed that on November 20, 2009 while armed with a firearm, they robbed Ms McDonald, Edena Farah, Robert Young, Paul Coladonato, Tung Sii Yun and Ronnie Chiang Chew Bang of cash, Apple iPhones, a Macbook, credit cards and various personal items.
It is further claimed that they received items belonging to Mr Coladonato and Mr Chew Bang.
Green, also known as Frederick Neely, and Lockhart deny the nine charges against them.
Green is represented by Dorsee McPhee while Lockhart is defended by Roger Gomez II.
In yesterday’s proceedings, prosecutor Vernal Collie asked Ms Farah what transpired on the day in question, from the time she left for work to the moment a shotgun was put in her face.
“You went to work on that day?” the prosecutor asked.
“Yes, around 8.30am. I went to work, waited for the tourists to come like I normally do and prepared the safety gear, like the helmet,” Ms Farah said.
“Did the tourists arrive?” Mr Collie asked.
“They did, shortly before 10am,” the witness answered.
She said she gave the tourists a brief orientation about Segway tours and safety, then trained them in the use of the vehicle.
“What happened thereafter, if anything?” Mr Collie asked.
“We stayed in the training area for a while. That’s in the front of BASH,” she said, adding that Earth Village comprises of about 160 acres of land containing a number of trails.
“We started through the tour and we were having a great time heading up the centre of Earth Village before taking them to the rest stop,” Ms Farah said.
She said they were heading north on the trail and she was showing the tourists how to ride the bikes without any hands.
Ms Farah said: “There was a gentleman that walked out of the bush with a gun in his hand.
“It didn’t register in my mind what was going on. I almost thought he was part of the tour. He just easily walked out of the bush with this big gun. The gun was bigger than the dude.
“It didn’t registrar until he put the gun in my face and said, ‘Get the f* down’” the court heard from the young woman.
“He grabbed me and threw me down to the ground and I felt a hit to the back of my head. I knew it was the gun” she said.
Ms Farah said she tried pleading with the man, fearing the effect such an incident would have on the Bahamas.
“I saw the bigger picture,” she said, before explaining that the robber “hit me in my head again with the gun”.
She said she could see the tourists were frightened.
Any thought of trying to take action was quashed when the gunman cocked the shotgun twice and fired two shots into the earth, she said.
“He said ‘No one out here will be a f hero here! No one out here will be a f hero here!” the court heard.
She said she also heard another voice in the distance and saw another gunman.
“Then they told me to get inside the ditch” – a 20 foot deep trench with water at the bottom, she said.
Ms Farah pleaded with them but “they kept telling me I must get in the ditch.”
“I started crying and he said ‘If you don’t get in the ditch, I will shoot you” she said.
The other gunman came towards them and threatened to let his friends rape her if she did not get in the ditch, the court heard.
She followed the request as the men turned their attention to the tourists and began robbing each of them.
Ms Farah said did not go all the way into the ditch, for fear of not being able to get back out.
She stayed there until she thought the incident was over, then called for the tourists to help her out, but they didn’t move.
After managing to use a tree branch to pull herself out she checked on the tourists, then rounded the corner and saw a male colleague tied up on the ground, along with other passengers from the Disney Cruise.
“I radioed for help and the police came,” she told the court.
“Were you robbed of anything?” the prosecutor asked the witness.
“Yes. I had an iPhone with and $70 in cash,” Ms Farah answered.
“Were you able to see if anything, was taken from the tourists?” Mr Collie asked.
She said yes and added that each of the Segway vehicles had bags containing the possessions of the tourists, which the robbers took and emptied.
Mr Gomez II asked her if any of the tourists in her group was Asian.
She said yes, “Asian-American”.
“Can you remember any of the names?” he asked.
“No sir,” Ms Farah answered.
“You spoke with police in reference to this matter?” he asked.
“Yes sir,” the witness answered.
“What descriptions did you give to police about the men?” the attorney asked.
She answered that she told police one of the robbers was “5’8”, dark skin, with jeans, shirt and a hood.
“The other was shorter, about 5’6” and fair skin”.
“Did you indicate that to the police?” the attorney asked.
“I may have,” the witness answered.
Her statement to police was shown to her before the attorney resumed his questioning.
“You would agree that in your statement you never told the police the other robber had fair skin, but that they were both dark?” the attorney asked.
Ms Farah did not agree and the two debated what is considered to be dark and fair skin in the Bahamas. She made a comparison between the prosecutors and then the two accused sitting in the prisoner’s box.
“You would agree persons who we consider mango is not the same as someone who is dark?” the attorney asked.
“Yes” she answered.
“I put it to you that in the Bahamas, when we say someone is dark, we mean dark black” he said.
“I disagree because you cannot attain for what others thoughts are,” Ms Farah answered.
“Your trying to change your story to fit the defendant in this box,” the attorney suggested, pointing to his client.
“I disagree,” she answered.
Mr McPhee had no questions for this witness.
The trial resumes today before Justice Roy Jones.