Relatives of former director of the National Museum and Art Gallery Dr Claire Broadbridge, sat in court yesterday as Morvant couple John Smith and Virginia Nedd made their first appearance for the September 2 murder of Broadbridge.
Four members of the Broadbridge family including son environmentalist Stephen Broadbridge, sat in the public gallery alongside relatives of Smith and Nedd in the Port of Spain Eighth Court.
Smith, 34, a joiner and Nedd, 32, a janitor, both of Seales Avenue, Morvant appeared before acting Chief Magistrate Maria Busby Earle-Caddle. Smith’s attorney Roland Bain complained that his client was denied medication on one occasion last week while in police custody.
The attorney did not identify Smith’s medical condition. Bain said Smith also had a concern for his personal safety and asked that personal items confiscated by police including clothing, $1,809 and keys to his workshop and vehicle, be returned to the accused man’s mother once they are not deemed part of the police’s inquiry.
Arrangements have been made for the items to be collected while Nedd’s attorney Darryl Worrell asked that his client’s cell phone be returned to Smith’s mother or any other relative. Worrell’s request was denied since, according to prosecutor Insp Winston Dillon, the cellphone forms part of the investigation.
Worrell complained that when Nedd was arrested on September 5, she was not allowed legal counsel although she was told at the time that she was not a suspect.
He said she was placed in a holding cell and not told that she was being held in a homicide inquiry. The attorneys’ complaints were noted by the acting chief magistrate. The couple will return to court on October 12. Broadbridge, 80, was found stabbed and her throat slit at her Fondes Amandes Road, St Ann’s home on September 2. Smith and Nedd were charged by Ag Insp Glendon Richards. Insp Creighton Hudson, Cpl Ameer Mohammed and PC Nikruma Porter are involved in the investigation spearheaded by Ag ASP Suzette Martin.