Acting Commissioner of Police Don McKenzie has confirmed that the Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF) was contacted on the US$100, 000.00 reward being offered by two top international celebrities to find the killer of LGBT member Josiah “Jonty” Robinson but the lawmen have no control over the funds.
Speaking to THE NEW TODAY Thursday, the island’s chief cop said that “a third person” acting on behalf of U.S Filmmaker and actor Tyler Perry and Grenadian-born Yvette Noel-Schure “made contact with the police force with reference to that” and indicated to RGPF “what the intent was” in terms of assisting the lawmen to resolve the murder case.
“Our position is that there is a murder to be solved and as such we are not prepared to dismiss anything that would lead to successfully bringing a closure to the Jonty matter,” he said.
Jonty of Beaulieu, St George was found dead on BBC beach in the south of the island on June 18.
The acting chief cop was quick to add that RGPF “has no control” (over the use of the funds) and that was not part of the discussions with the Third Person who engaged them on the issue.
He also said that RGPG had nothing to do with respect to “anything regarding the content that was being put out, the reward that was being offered or the timing of any release.”
“We do not have any control of the administration of the Reward Fund,” he quipped.
According to Commissioner McKenzie, he formed the impression that the US$100, 000.00 reward will be given “on the successful conviction of the perpetrator” of the murder in a court of law.
“Of course if the police have a role to play we would be as transparent as possible but we are not responsible for the administration of that fund – it is not on our charge, we are not responsible,” he told THE NEW TODAY.
Commissioner McKenzie admitted that there is need for more clarity from the persons behind the reward on who will be entitled to get the money in light of the fact that the information provided could lead to the arrest of the killer but the murder case could fail in court for reasons outside the control of the supplier of the information.
He said the impression that he formed is that “short of a conviction I don’t know how that will be treated.”
Mc Kenzie also sought to clear the air on the narrative being given by some persons on Social Media that Jonty was murdered because he was a gay person.
“The motive for Jonty’s murder is yet to be established,” he said.
The island’s chief cop also denied reports in some quarters that RGPF investigators are not doing enough to catch the killer.
“This is the furthest from the truth. We have spent enormous resources both in terms of time just to solve that and we continue to do that,” he remarked.
In addition, Commissioner McKenzie referred to the decision that was taken to bring in top Trinidad Pathologist Dr. Hubert Daisley to do a second post-mortem on the body in order “to definitively indicate the cause of death.”
He said the effort by the State to bring in the top Caribbean expert “is not a very cheap” undertaking on the part of the State but “we went through that expense because that is the level of importance (given) to solving that case.”
In a post dedicated to ‘Jonty’, Yvette Noel Schure wrote: “My Dearest JONTY. How? How has it been a month since you were so brutally taken from us? It just feels dark without your light. It seems unreal but the soreness in my heart tells me how real it is. I pray you are at peace and that you are doing a Jab Jab waltz in Heaven. I miss your smile, your voice, your dancing feet.”