Died after police raid: Stacy Ramdeen

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Funeral after seven-week wait

By Carolyn Kissoon carolyn.kissoon@trinidadexpress.com

Relatives and friends will say goodbye to Stacy Ramdeen this afternoon—seven weeks after she died.

Ramdeen, a mother of three, died after a police raid at her home.

Ramdeen's husband, Evans Petamber, said he was waiting on the results of the review on his wife's autopsies by US forensic pathologist James Gill before she was buried.

"But I can't wait any longer. Her body is deteriorating. Two autopsies were done and samples taken for testing. I can't put her body through that. I have to go ahead and bury her before her body gets worse," he said.

Petamber said the funeral service would be held at the family's home at Ibis Gardens from 2 p.m., followed by a procession to the Caroni Public Cemetery, located a short distance from his house. "We will walk the coffin to the cemetery. I think that is a special way to send her off," he said.

Petamber said although he will bury his wife this afternoon, he will continue to fight for justice.

"I am just awaiting the results of this third review and then I will know what is the next step," he said.

The Government ordered a review of the two autopsies performed on Ramdeen's body after her family protested outside the Office of the Prime Minister.

On November 8, police officers of the Central Division Task Force conducted a raid at Ramdeen's home at Ibis Gardens, Caroni.

That afternoon, Ramdeen, 32, who was also known as Ameera Mohammed, was pronounced dead at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex at Mt Hope.

Security camera footage from the family home later showed police officers carrying Ramdeen from the house, holding her by the hands and feet. She was wrapped in a sheet.

Ramdeen was placed in the trunk of the police SUV and taken away.

An autopsy conducted by Dr Hughvon Des Vignes at the Forensic Science Centre stated the cause of death as asphyxia. The post-mortem report also indicated she suffered from chronic heart disease, which could have led to her death.

Police had initially reported that Ramdeen swallowed an unknown quantity of cocaine during the raid and subsequently died, despite repeated attempts to revive her.

Not satisfied with the results of the autopsy, the family had a second autopsy conducted by Dr Hubert Daisley. Daisley conducted the autopsy at a funeral home, and found the cause of death was as a result of strangulation.

Petamber also dismissed reports there were traces of drugs and alcohol in blood samples taken from his wife's body.

A team of detectives from the Homicide Bureau (South) is investigating the circumstances of the case involving 11 police officers. The Police Complaints Authority is also investigating.

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