Donkey dies in police custody Wednesday Ramblings
Stabroek News
February 13, 2002

The donkey, accused of manslaughter by way of unlawful littering, died in police custody Monday night under mysterious circumstances.

A police press release issued late yesterday simply said "the donkey had died at the Brickdam lockups in the early hours of Tuesday morning. The public can be assured that the matter will be thoroughly investigated."

But the PNC expressed outrage at the incident and noted that this was the fiftieth beast of burden to be killed in police custody since the PPP had come to power. "They are trying to make asses out of us" said a spokeshorse at a press conference in the pasture at Sophia Place.

The donkey of 104 Lombard Street had been charged with the manslaughter of Brian Smith who allegedly died on January 15th when a police officer having slipped on a banana peel, dropped by the accused, dislodged his partner's gun which discharged a round into the victim's open mouth. Smith had been wanted on a charge of littering for allegedly throwing a Busta bottle into the Main Street canal.

President Jagdeo said it was far too early to make assumptions about how the accused had died. He expressed sympathy towards the widow of the deceased and said the government will do "anything to assuage their grief." He instructed that a truck load of grass be sent round to the Lombard Street residence immediately. Dr Roger Luncheon also mentioned that the death was not necessarily a result of police negligence but "I have no doubt whatsoever that the donkey has died."

Meanwhile attorney for the donkey Basil Williams said he had information that his client had been attacked by two assailants after a row over a bucket of oats and that they had rammed the donkey's head into a brick wall.

The Minister of Home Affairs refuted the assertion and said the donkey had died from natural causes as a result of a broken neck. He has assigned a top team to assist him in the investigations.

The funeral will be held Friday afternoon after the body has lain at the Square of the Revolution. The family is asking that only edible wreaths be sent. A rally headed by C.N Sharma will follow shortly thereafter. Black neck braces optional.

Luncheon in court

Head of the Presidential Dr Roger Luncheon appeared for the second day in Magistrate's Court on contempt of court charges.

In the summing up of his eight-hour testimony to explain why he had no doubt whatsoever that there was corruption in the magistracy, Luncheon said he was usually not necessarily inclined to make pronouncements on matters legal as he usually restricted his comments to affairs of the body politic. However he contended that it had come to the attention of the powers that be that certain nefarious activities were ongoing magistratorially and that not to make some mention of this might indeed have been a dereliction of duty on behalf of the government's chief obscurator. He then invited a bewildered police prosecutor to ask any questions in the time remaining.

But the magistrate who had gone through two pens since taking testimony Monday morning asked to be excused so as to go see a doctor for a case of acute writer's cramp. The case was adjourned until Friday.