Died in fire: Prince Francette

Justin Francette told police that it was only while fighting the fire destroying his car that he discovered his three-year-old son burning up in the back seat on Friday afternoon.

And it was only when police arrived on the scene that the child, still showing signs of life, was taken from the gutted car and carried to hospital.

Justin Francette

Justin Francette posted this image on his Facebook page today with a note

However, it would be too late. The doctor pronounced Prince Francette dead on arrival. He had suffered burns covering 100 per cent of his body, and it would have been a miracle if he had survived, the police were told.

The distraught family declined to speak with Express on Friday , but in a telephone interview yesterday, the child’s his aunt, Amanda Granger called on Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith to intervene.

Granger, 23, said she was not satisfied with the information given to the investigators.

“He (the infant) lived with me. His parents separated before he was born because they had problems. He would go by his father sometimes. He did complain about things…He went to his father’s house on Wednesday,” she said.

Granger said a “stranger” called on Friday, informing her that little Prince was trapped in a burning car.

car burnt

The car in which prince Francette died

“I tried calling them (the father’s family) but no answer. We had to call the police station to find out what was going on. We sent the police there. His father was not injured. Why did no one save that child from the car?” she cried.

Granger called on the family to tell everything that happened that day.

“Tell us the truth. Not even a call? A stranger called. We came and saw him in the car,” she said.

She said the family was handed a plastic bag containing the child’s clothes and toys at the scene.

The child celebrated his third birthday in November. “He was my everything. I don’t have any children. He was my child. He was a loving child,” she said,.

Granger said the child’s mother, 21-year-old Maria Granger, was distraught.

According to the official police report, officers were called to a ‘car on fire’ report, and went to Cito Lane, Tabaquite.

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They found a Nissan March, with the interior burnt out, parked in the front yard.

They met the child’s father, a labourer/mechanic, who pointed to the back seat of the car.

The officers saw the child, in a crouched position, motionless but still alive.

The 21-year-old father said at around 1.45p.m. he and his son returned home from next door and he left his son playing in the front yard next to the car.

Francette sent he went into the family house, and a short time later heard an explosion and came out to find the car on fire.

He said with the help of neighbours, they put out the fire, only to find his son.

Paramedics took the boy to the hospital with his grandmother Dianne Stewart. But the child did not survive.

A post mortem will be done on Monday. The car has been seized and taken to the Chaguanas Police Station to be inspected.

Police say they have taken statements from three witnesses in the case.


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