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Providence takes the stand in murder trial

Jevon Daniels (File photograph)

A man accused of the murder of Jevon Daniels said in the Supreme Court that he had no reason to kill his friend and former housemate.

Davin Providence took the stand yesterday, telling a jury that he had nothing to do with Mr Daniels’s death.

He admitted he had sometimes not told the truth when under pressure.

However, Mr Providence insisted: “He was someone I knew from the neighbourhood for a long time.

“I might have said he was one of my best friends.”

Mr Daniels, a father of one, was reported missing on May 16, 2016, after his family had not seen him for several days.

His body was found badly decomposed on waste ground joining Ireland Rangers Field to Ireland Island in Sandys about a month later.

Mr Providence has denied murdering Mr Daniels on an unknown date between May 13 and June 17.

He said that he had known Mr Daniels for about 20 years and considered that they were close.

Mr Providence said that Mr Daniels moved in with him some time between late 2014 and early 2015, but that he had to kick him out because “I was never supposed to have anyone here in the first place”.

He said that Mr Daniels returned to stay with him in about March 2016, and that the latter first began to sleep infrequently on the couch before bringing a bag of clothes.

He added that Mr Daniels often stayed at other people’s houses, and that it was not uncommon for him to be out all day.

Mr Providence admitted that his family and upstairs neighbours found Mr Daniels to be “loud at times”, but said that he ultimately did not have a problem with him.

He added that Mr Daniels occasionally let him borrow his Blu smartphone to access WhatsApp and the internet, and that he would put his SIM card in it to do so.

Asked why he did not use his own phone, Mr Providence said that he had “a trash Nokia”.

He added that he knew Mr Daniels lost his phone sometimes, and that it often appeared later.

Mr Providence said that Mr Daniels left his house on May 16, 2016.

The court was told earlier of his police interview in which he said that he confronted Mr Daniels for coming home intoxicated and disruptive, handing him a blanket and pillow and refusing to let him back in.

Mr Providence said yesterday: “I was asleep and he woke me up with all the noise.

“He was at the front door and shaking the windows.

“I told him he’s not coming in here with all that.”

Mr Providence said that he found Mr Daniels’s phone on the front lawn the morning after their confrontation, and immediately set it up as his own.

He admitted wanting the phone because his own, which he had bought for $20, did not work well.

He said that he bagged up Mr Daniels’s possessions, telling the latter’s mother to come and collect them.

Mr Providence said that he did not attempt to reach out to Mr Daniels because he did not believe him to be in any danger.

It was not until Mr Daniels’s family filed a missing-person report, he added, that he grew suspicious.

Mr Providence said that police later came to take photographs of his house and removed both his phones.

He added that he later gave a police interview in which he lied and said that Mr Daniels’s phone had been sold to him.

Mr Providence admitted that it was a “mistake” to say this, and that he was not sure whether it was Mr Daniels’s phone or his other phone.

He added: “I was afraid it would look fishy.”

Mr Providence said recognised that if he had not lied, he would not be on trial.

However, he insisted that he did not do anything to Mr Daniels.

Carrington Mahoney, for the Crown, said that Mr Providence’s stories did not add up and accused him of being a frequent liar.

He compared Mr Providence’s interviews with police with his evidence, and highlighted that he mentioned last seeing Mr Daniels anywhere between May 12 and May 16.

Mr Mahoney also noted how the accused lied about how he found Mr Daniels’s phone while speaking to police in 2016, only to circle back while on the stand to say that he did buy another phone.

He added: “You outsmarted yourself, because you thought you did such an excellent job that you felt comfortable handing it over to police.”

Mr Mahoney said that the grey jacket that Mr Providence told police Mr Daniels wore when he last came to the house was actually found by Mr Daniels’s mother in his belongings.

He told the defendant: “You killed him for his phone, and it was like Christmas for you.”

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.