‘Dad told cops I was killer because he thinks I’m gay’
Accused gun killer Derek Spalding told a jury he once shot and injured a man during an armed robbery.
Giving evidence at Supreme Court, he admitted pulling the trigger on Eugene Eversley when he robbed Lindo’s supermarket in Devonshire at the age of 20.
“I was arrested and detained at the scene,” explained Mr Spalding, now 36, when he took the stand yesterday.
He also admitted committing an attempted robbery at the offices of John Swan, explaining he got locked up for 28 years after he pleaded guilty to both offences.
“I just felt like life was over and I hadn’t even lived,” he said. He added that he was addicted to drugs at the time of the robberies.
“I was pretty much living to get high at that time. I was doing some really shameful things; nothing to be proud of,” he remarked.
Mr Spalding is on trial accused of shooting footballer Shaki Crockwell dead in August 2007, allegedly over an unpaid drug debt. He denies the allegation, and told the jury he was at home in Pembroke on the night in question, getting ready to work on the ferries the next day.
He said claims from Crown witnesses that Mr Crockwell used to sell drugs for him were wrong.
“Nobody has never sold drugs for me,” he said.
Referring to evidence from his own father and his prison friend Randy Lightbourne that he shot Mr Crockwell over a drug debt, he said: “Nobody doesn’t owe me any money”.
He dismissed evidence given by his father earlier in the trial that he confessed the killing to him.
“I don’t even have a relationship with him. I don’t call him father or daddy,” he told the jury.
The father’s name cannot be reported due to a ban imposed by trial judge Carlisle Greaves at the request of prosecutors.
Asked by defence lawyer Mark Pettingill why he believes his father would make false claims about him, he said his father got angry with him due to believing he was gay.
“He told me I’m a batty boy. That means I’m gay. He said I was locked up for so long that I like boys,” he told the jury. “I had a girlfriend at the time.”
He said his father “really believes” he is a homosexual and is “very upset” about that. That, he said, is his theory about why his father told police he is a murderer.
Another Crown witness, convicted bank robber Randy Lightbourne, also testified as a prosecution witness. He told the jury he’d met Mr Spalding in jail and Mr Spalding confessed he killed Mr Crockwell after his release.
Mr Lightbourne reported the matter to the police when he was seriously ill in hospital, having been shot himself in July 2010.
Asked by his lawyer why Mr Lightbourne would make such claims, Mr Spalding, who worked for Marine and Ports, replied that he did not want to get involved in “that madness” Mr Lightbourne was involved with, later defining the madness as “street life”.
He said he refused to help Mr Lightbourne find out who shot him, and believes Mr Lightbourne told police he killed Mr Crockwell because of “jealousy, and me not coming on board with his programme after I got parole. He was entertaining street life and I was entertaining Marine and Ports.”
He added: “I have seen Randy Lightbourne set people up in prison.”
The jury heard on Thursday how, when police searched Mr Spalding’s house during the murder investigation, they found violent lyrics to reggae songs.
The prosecution allege that Mr Spalding penned the songs, which contain multiple references to guns, while he was in prison for the armed robberies.
However, Mr Spalding told the jury they were written by another inmate, Kirk Mundy, and given to him. He said Mr Mundy wrote the songs while they were both in the Maximum Security wing as “entertainment for the people who were locked up”.
During his cross-examination of Mr Spalding, prosecutor Carrington Mahoney accused him of being “a manipulator,” which he denied.
The case continues.