Crown nears end of case in fatal shooting

Witness denies alleged contradictions

With 20 witnesses giving evidence so far in the trial of Jose Sanchez for the September 2014 murder of Solomon Webster, the Crown is near the close of its case, Director of Public Prosecutions Cheryll Richards said on Friday. 

She told Justice Charles Quin that she would be calling the police officer in charge of the investigation on Tuesday, May 19, and she expected that he would be the final witness for the prosecution. The next step would be the submission of facts that are agreed by her team and counsel for the defense. 

Sanchez, who elected to be tried by judge alone, is accused of shooting Mr. Webster on Sunday evening, Sept. 7, in a yard off Miss Daisy Lane in West Bay. The incident began with a struggle between Sanchez and another man, Shaquille Bush, in which Mr. Webster became involved. 

Justice Quin has said he wants to hear Mr. Bush’s account of the evening. 

On Friday morning, he heard the evidence of Rachelyn Bush. She said she was driving out of her yard when Sanchez’s brother dropped him off and he got into her car. Sanchez told her he wanted her to chill out with him that evening, but she told him of her plan to see someone in town. She drove him to Miss Daisy Lane and pulled into the yard where his mother lived. 

Sanchez remained sitting in her car and then she saw Shaquille Bush coming up to Sanchez’s side of the car. Ms. Bush described how the exchange between them became physical. She said the men were hanging onto each other as if each were trying to get the other to the ground. When they moved away from her car and around the side of one of the houses in the yard, she did not see them. She did not see Mr. Webster get involved. 

After she heard a gunshot, she called 911 and reversed out of the yard. 

Defense counsel Mark Heywood said information had been received that Ms. Bush was saying things outside court that were different from her statement to police and what she had said in court. Specifically, it was alleged that she was saying she saw Sanchez shoot Mr. Webster. Ms. Bush replied that if anyone had said that, it was a lie.  

She repeated her evidence that she did not see Sanchez with a gun and she did not see him shoot Mr. Webster. She acknowledged that a person close to her had wanted her to say those things in court, but she had refused. 

Mr. Heywood urged the court to say that if anyone was trying to interfere with a witness about her evidence, the matter should be investigated. Ms. Richards advised that such an investigation was taking place.