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SEVENTEEN years after Akua Cromwell was stabbed to death, officers of the Homicide Bureau of Investigations’ Cold Case Unit have charged Prison Officer I Richard Montoute, aka Richard and Redman, in connection with the murder.
He appeared virtually before Maureen Baboolal-Gafoor in the Port of Spain Fifth Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, when the matter was adjourned to April 4 and transferred to the Eighth Court.
Cromwell, 26, of Carenage, was at work in the Sea Lots district on Thursday August 10, 2006, when he got into an argument with another man. During the incident, the man armed himself with a knife and threatened to kill Cromwell.
As the argument continued, the assailant chased Cromwell, cornered him and stabbed him in the chest with the knife before running off.
The Homicide Bureau of Investigations (Region I) investigated, but although several leads were followed, no arrest was made.
A police press release said that 16 years later, in November 2022, the matter was referred to the Cold Case Unit and the case file was reviewed.
As a result, the Cold Case specialist made certain recommendations to investigators and following fresh enquiries, a suspect was arrested.
Investigations were led by Snr Supt Rishi Singh and Supt Douglas and supervised by Sgt Nanhoo, with assistance from Cold Case Unit officers acting Cpl Kirk Griffith (a cold case specialist) and PCs Rodriguez, Ramkissoon and Mc David.
Montoute was charged by WPC Pamphile of the Cold Case Unit on Thursday following advice from Director of Public Prosecutions Roger Gaspard, SC.
This is the 20th cold case solved by the unit since it was launched in 2016.