Overcome with grief at a murder committed by his brother, Brenton McLean wept as he hugged the murder victim’s son and apologised to him yesterday.
Saying the victim, businesswoman Haniffa ‘Miss Lucky’ Bedassie was like a mother to him, McLean begged Bedassie’s son Torrance to accept his apology after McLean’s brother Leon Jordan was seen fleeing Bedassie’s shop when her body was discovered. Jordan was subsequently cornered and killed in a shoot-out with police.
Tears streaming down his face, Mc Lean embraced Bedassie, the younger son of Haniffa, 55, who was a mother of two, at the murder scene in St Thomas Village, Chaguanas. McLean’s brother Leon, 29, was shot dead at the nearby Connector Road. McLean is the eldest of five boys. “I came to apologise for what my brother did. Ms Lucky was like a mother to us. She was my mother too. We are brothers,” Mclean told Bedassie. “Leon was a police officer so he supposed to know better. My mother did not bring us up so,” McLean cried. The weeping man journeyed all the way from his home in Carenage on learning that Bedassie was found dead.
Speaking later with Newsday, McLean said his mother is in England and as the eldest sibling he felt it was his duty to visit the Bedassie family and apologise for his brother’s action. He said his mother used to rent from Bedassie when they were growing up and he and his four siblings grew up with Torrance and his older brother Terrance.
“We were very close. We lived like family. My mother and Ms Lucky were very close as well. These boys (points at Torrance and Terrence) mother come like my own mother. If he (Jordan) could kill Ms Lucky, then he could kill his own mother too,” McLean sobbed. He said his brother’s actions had brought shame to the family and their mother is taking it very hard.
A close friend of the Bedassie family, Barbara Duncan Harris and Bedassie’s son Torrance were the ones who discovered her body shortly after 11 am, in a bedroom of her home at the back of her businessplace, Lucky’s Mini Mart. The woman’s hands were tied behind her back and she was gagged. There were clear marks of violence to her face and neck. Police believe she may have been beaten to death, but are awaiting the results of an autopsy to be done today at the Forensic Science Centre.
Police said that at the time of the discovery, Jordan was still inside the mini mart and fled when he heard Harris’ screams. Jordan jumped over a fence into the yard of the nearby Redemption Worship Centre. Police who were on patrol, were alerted and gave chase after Jordan who was killed in a shoot-out with the police. “This is the worst thing I have ever experienced in my life,” Torrance said as he was hugged by Harris. As undertakers removed his mother’s body, Torrance shouted out, “Ma, ma, ma” before fainting. As news of the murder of their beloved shopkeeper spread, residents of St Thomas Village lined the roadway, many in tears, as they recounted what a kind and friendly person she was.
Bedassie’s younger brother Hosein Ali said he did not know how to tell his 94-year-old mother, who lives with him, that her daughter was murdered. Sgt John, WPC Charles and Cpl Bobb are investigating.