A three-year-old girl mistakenly assumed at the wake for her murdered mother on Wednesday night that people had gathered at the family's home for a party, owing to her lack of understanding of death.
Ellen Krishana Mohammed, the girl’s mother, was hacked to death by a male relative, 40, at the family's home in La Brea Village, Guayaguayare, on May 11. Relatives said Mohammed was a victim of domestic abuse.
Mohammed’s father, Steve Jones, said he could not find the words to respond when the child asked the reason for people being at the house.
"She is too small to understand it was a wake for her mother. She said, ‘Grandpa, it having a party here?’
"I could not answer. It is hard for me to talk about the murder, especially with Ellen’s three young daughters," Jones told Newsday by phone on Thursday.
Otherwise, he said, "The children are surrounded by a lot of people since the murder. They are doing okay."
Mohammed’s eldest child is six and the youngest 18 months old.
On counselling for the children, Jones said staff from the Social Development Ministry, the children’s school and the Children’s Authority have met with the family. He added that members of the police Victim and Support Unit were expected to meet with the children.
Jones said Mohammed’s mother, Allyson Mohammed, 51, has become withdrawn and finds it difficult to deal with the death.
"She is partially blind and has diabetes. She cannot move around by herself much, and Ellen was the one who took care of her. She is not doing well."
An autopsy on Mohammed's body was done on Wednesday afternoon, and relatives were planning the funeral. It is tentatively set for Saturday at a church, then to Newlands Public Cemetery for burial.
The police were seeking advice from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions on the suspect, who was still in custody. Mohammed had reported him to the police, saying he had threatened her.
After he murdered her, he walked out into the street with a bloodied cutlass and surrendered to police.
Homicide Bureau Region II are leading investigations.