MURDER accused Barry Alphonso yesterday said a final goodbye to his murdered son, Kareem, under the watchful eye of armed police and prison officers at the St Augustine funeral home of Lee's Funeral Directors, the Express has learnt.
Alphonso was taken out of the Maximum Security Prison in Golden Grove, Arouca, amid heavy security around 8 a.m. yesterday to say goodbye to Kareem.
Alphonso is currently incarcerated awaiting trial for the murder of Chevon "Tupac" Lewis, 23, of Lodge Place, East Dry River, at a wake in Morvant in on April 12 2009.
Last Saturday, Alphonso's 11-year-old son, Kareem, was one of two people fatally shot at Dorata Street in Laventille.
The last time Alphonso saw Kareem was in 2009.
On Tuesday, Alphonso's attorney, Gerald Ramdeen, wrote Prisons Commissioner Martin Martinez requesting that Alphonso be allowed to attend Kareem's funeral.
The request was denied.
On Wednesday, Ramdeen filed an application in the High Court for a judicial review of Martinez's decision.
Justice Joan Charles, in a more than three-hour long special sitting of the High Court on Wednesday, ruled that Alphonso should be allowed to view Kareem's body at an undisclosed location, but should not be able to attend the funeral service.
For security reasons Charles ruled that the location for Alphonso's viewing of Kareem's body should be within an eight-mile radius of the Golden Grove Prison in Arouca.
In compliance with that order, the Shaym Islamic Funeral Services arranged for the viewing to be done at the Lee's Funeral Directors funeral home.
The Shaym Islamic Funeral Services prepared Kareem's body for burial.
The Lee's Funeral Directors funeral home located along the Eastern Main Road in St Augustine was said to be within the perimeter stipulated by Charles.
Alphonso was yesterday escorted to the Lee's Funeral Directors funeral home by officers of both the police and prisons.
Alphonso was allowed to perform the Salat al-Janazah on Kareem.
Around 10 a.m., a teary-eyed Alphonso was taken back to the Maximum Security Prison.
Hours later, around 1.30 p.m., the funeral service for Kareem was held at the Mucurapo Road compound of the Jamaat-al-Muslimeen.
Hundreds of friends and relatives were present at the service, with some wearing jerseys "celebrating the life of Kareem 'Okie' Alphonso".
The service started with friends and relatives being allowed to come forward and talk in front of the congregation.
An unidentified female relative chastised the Laventille community for not coming out and protesting Kareem's death.
"An 11-year-old was killed and nobody came out and protested in the streets, but if the police killed the man who shot Kareem then the whole of Laventille would have come out," she said.
Kareem's mother, Keyseca Munroe, said her son was "now an angel looking down from heaven".
Imam Yasin Abu Bakr, who officiated at yesterday's funeral service, wept as he said he felt as though it was one of his own sons who was killed.
In his 40-minute address, Bakr yesterday spoke of his own legal troubles.
Bakr said his right to remain silent was being taken away through summons to appear at the Commission of Enquiry into the 1990 attempted coup. He is expected to testify at the enquiry on Monday.
Bakr said he did not know how much assistance he can be to the enquiry more than 20 years after the fact.
Earlier this month, Justice Mark Mohammed ordered a retrial in Bakr's sedition case after the jury reported that it was unable to reach a verdict in the matter.
Kareem was later laid to rest at the Tunapuna Cemetery.