Laurel V Williams
RELATIVES of two of the three people whose bodies were found burnt beyond recognition after a fire destroyed a house in Guapo in February 2020, expressed relief that a suspect had been detained for what turned out to be a triple murder.
“Not only is the family relieved, but the entire village is also glad the police held him. We would feel more relief if he gets a conviction. We hope he is charged and does not get off on any technicality,” a relative said.
“…Maybe that is why investigators took so much time to arrest him, using forensic evidence to make sure they had the right man.”
The relative who spoke to Newsday asked not to be identified.
Those who died in the fire were Ceslyn “Linda” Farrell, 69, her son Patrick Farrell, 48, and friend Seycelles Hannah, 41. Farrell was the mother of six and grandmother of 17. The fire happened at her home at Petrotrin Quarters.
Autopsies said the three were chopped and stabbed to death. Police believe the fire was used to conceal the victims’ true cause of death.
Three months before the killings, Farrell took in Hannah, her “church friend,” owing to domestic problems. Hannah was the mother of two and previously lived at Point Fortin.
Homicide Bureau Region III police initially arrested a 36-year-old suspect in 2020, but he was later released without charge pending further investigations. He worked as a taxi driver along the Point Fortin/LaBrea route.
Earlier this week, the police rearrested the man after receiving a report from an overseas laboratory regarding DNA evidence. On Friday, the police submitted a file to the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions for advice.
Due to the pandemic, bureaucracy and the lengthy wait for DNA test results from samples sent abroad for analysis, the remains of the three were only given to families last September for final rites.
The ruins of Ceslyn’s house have since been demolished. WPC George is leading investigations.
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