PRAYER MEETING: Robbie Duncan leaves the San Fernando Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday. —Photo: TREVOR WATSON

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Guilty of threatening to kill elderly couple

By Nikita Braxton-Benjamin nikita.braxton@trinidadexpress.com

A MAN who threatened to kill his elderly neighbours and their grandchildren before the start of a prayer meeting was found guilty of the offence on Tuesday.

Robbie Duncan was warned by the magistrate that he should have more respect for people, including senior citizens.

Duncan, 38, of Williamsville, was charged by Corporal Ramlogan that on July 21, 2012, at Ben Lomand Village, Williamsville, he assaulted Kaloutie Parmanan, 65, and her husband Bhagirath Parmanan, 66, by making threats to kill them.

Kaloutie Parmanan testified that she was cooking a pot of channa for a prayer meeting being held later that evening when Duncan came up to her around 1.30 p.m. and said: “If it takes me five (expletive) years to kill your husband. I will kill him. I will kill you and your two grandchildren.”

Parmanan said she became fearful and was “trembling over the pot”.

She said Duncan had “something white” with blood in one hand and a styrotex cup in the other.

Parmanan said she did not leave the boiling pot and testified that there was a female neighbour in the shed kneading flour at the time Duncan came. 

She said Duncan, whom she had known from a baby, stayed nearby for about an hour before he left.

The grandmother of four said around 5 p.m. she made a report to the police and returned for the prayer meeting. She also told the court that her husband was threatened by Duncan while cleaning a fire-cracker.

 Parmanan said Duncan told his two sons to shoot her husband of 45 years, Bhagirath Parmanan, when they (the children) got older. Duncan gave evidence, denying that he ever threatened the couple.

The welding inspector, who lived opposite the Parmanans, admitted that he spoke to Kaloutie Permanan but only to compliment her and another “bougee” for coming together to cook.

He said he did not see Bhagirath Parmanan until around 6 p.m. during the prayer meeting, at which he (Duncan) was praised by the pastor for attending.

Duncan, a father of three, also said that his children, who attended church every Sunday, were not at home but were by their grandparents on the day the couple alleged he made the threats.

In answering questions from defence attorney Michelle Rampaul, Duncan said that at the time Kaloutie Parmanan claimed she was threatened he was asleep at home.

He claimed that Bhagirath Parmanan had once hit him on the head with a bottle and had threatened him.

Magistrate Rae Roopchan found that the State had proven its case. In finding Duncan guilty of the charge, Roopchan said: “Why can’t we carry out the teachings of our respective religions. If we do, we will have such a beautiful place.”

The magistrate then made reference to recent newspaper articles, including the murder trial of Vindra Naipaul-Coolman, the body of a man found burnt under tyres, and school violence. 

He reprimanded and discharged Duncan and placed him on a $10,000 bond to keep the peace and be of good behaviour for three years.

Roopchan told Duncan to either let by-gones be by-gones or refrain from speaking to the Parmanans because should they make another report, he could be jailed for the offence.

“What good it is if elderly people have to feel threatened? ...Let us live in peace and have due respect for everyone,” Roopchan said.

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