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Senior detective in murder inquiry testifies at trial

Devoted father: Jevon Daniels’s body was discovered in June 2016, more than a month after he was last seen (File photograph)

A senior detective who questioned murder accused Davin Providence gave evidence at his trial yesterday.

Detective Chief Inspector Jason Smith interviewed Mr Providence in June 2016, just days after the badly decomposed body of Jevon Daniels was discovered on waste ground adjoining Ireland Rangers Field on Ireland Island, Sandys.

A forensic pathologist was unable to confirm a cause of death because of the level of decomposition.

Mr Daniels, a father of one who had been sharing an apartment with the accused, had been last seen on May 16 that year.

Under cross-examination from defence attorney Charles Richardson yesterday, Mr Smith confirmed that the inquiry had led police to identify a number of “persons of interest”.

Pressed by Mr Richardson, the detective confirmed that they were regarded as suspects.

Mr Richardson also asked why no effort was made to investigate the source of tape that was used to secure plastic bags around Mr Daniels’ body.

Mr Smith said that forensic experts had advised that the tape was too badly deteriorated to reveal any clues.

But Mr Richardson pointed to photographs of the tape which revealed its colour, manufacturer and model number.

He said: “That tape was eminently suitable for analysis. There was nothing you could get from it?”

At one point during cross-examination, Mr Richardson accused Mr Smith — who was the deputy lead investigator in the inquiry — of “passing the buck” on the stand.

Mr Richardson then referred to the transcript of an interview that Mr Smith conducted with Mr Providence at Hamilton Police Station on June 27, 2016.

Mr Richardson noted that Mr Smith told Mr Providence that he wanted to discuss the contents of a Blu phone that the accused had voluntarily handed in to police a few days earlier.

According to the transcript, Mr Providence repeatedly asked Mr Smith which phone he was referring to — because he had handed in two Blu phones to the police.

In the witness box yesterday, Mr Smith acknowledged that at the time of the interview he did not know that Mr Providence had handed in two phones.

Earlier during proceedings, the jury learnt that phone records showed a Sim card linked to Mr Daniels was last used in his phone in the evening of May 13.

The court heard that the next morning, a Sim card associated with Mr Providence was used with the phone and a number of social-media accounts related to Mr Providence were linked to the device.

A forensic analysis of the phone also revealed that photographs of Mr Daniels and his son had been deleted from the device at some point.

The trial, before Puisne Judge Juan Wolffe, continues.

It is The Royal Gazette’s policy not to allow comments on stories regarding criminal court cases. This is to prevent any statements being published that may jeopardise the outcome of that case