Deadly rage

16-year-old wrongfully stabbed to death

PORT OF SPAIN –– A teenaged girl was stabbed to death by one of her peers in a jealous rage in Second Caledonia, Laventille, on Wednesday evening.

But the victim turned out to be the wrong person in the wrong place at the wrong time when tragedy struck.

Father of Jernice Francis leaving  the Forensic Science Centre, St James, yesterday, after viewing the body of his daughter who was stabbed to death in Laventille on Wednesday.
Father of Jernice Francis leavingthe Forensic Science Centre, St James, yesterday, after viewing the body of his daughter who was stabbed to death in Laventille on Wednesday.

The 16-year old victim Jernice Francis died after being stabbed in the neck by an 18-year-old, who reportedly was seeking out another girl she felt was involved with her boyfriend. She was walking along the Snake Valley Road, Laventille, near to a friend’s home when she was accosted by the jealous girlfriend.

The 18-year-old is said to have stabbed Jernice, who died after being rushed to the Port of Spain General Hospital.

The other girl fled the scene and is said to be hiding from the police.

The dead girl’s grieving mother described the killing as senseless.

“This was just senseless,” lamented the mother, Lisa Francis, 43, of Second Caledonia and a mother of our including Jernice. “She was just a child, but she was so helpful. Sometimes she would be there for you no matter what. That’s the kind of person she was. But you know how they say friends could only lead you astray.”

Trying to put the pieces together surrounding the death of her child, Francis said she was at a friend’s house on Snake Valley, Laventille at about 8:30 on Wednesday night when the incident occurred.

Newsday found out that Jernice’s friend was in the middle of a love triangle, involving herself, her boyfriend and the 18-year-old girl who did the stabbing. Francis told reporters that her daughter went to spend the day with her friend at her home on Snake Valley. Jernice and her friend were outside, near the home, when the 18-year-old approached them and said goodnight. They responded in kind, unaware that she was a jilted lover seeking revenge.

The mother said Jernice and her friend started walking along Snake Valley when the 18-year old woman approached Jernice and stabbed her once in the neck. The friend heard her scream out, and when she turned, Jernice was lying on the ground.

A report was made to the police moments after, and Jernice was rushed to the Port of Spain General Hospital, where she succumbed to her injuries. After the stabbing it was reported that the 18-year-old stayed for a while, and even apologized, saying that she intended to attack Jernice’s friend.

She then went into hiding.

Up to press time the police had not yet found her. At the Forensic Science Centre, St James yesterday, an autopsy report confirmed that the teenaged girl died due to massive haemorrhaging consistent with a stab wound.

Francis described her daughter as a loving and helpful person.

“She liked to do hair dressing, and liked to sing and dance,” said the distraught mother. “She used to help children and youths when they had march-past to choreograph dance moves for competitions. I had just finished organizing the things for back to school. She was excited to go back because she was going into form four.

She was even talking about graduation, and how much she wanted to go. She kept telling me she wanted to get a nice dress for graduation.” Francis added that since one of her neighbours told her about the incident, she has been in a state of shock.

The mother was told by Jernice’s friend that neither of the teens knew that their boyfriend was cheating on them, so the attack was completely unexpected.

“This just makes no sense,” said Francis, “The friend who I spoke to — my daughter’s friend — she said she didn’t know the man had someone else. She didn’t know anyone would be looking to fight her for her fella. And even if the other girl apologized, she knew what she was doing.

“She planned to kill someone else regardless.

“Even if she had killed her target, what would she want to do that for? Because now my daughter is dead, she is on the run, and the man, is free to do what he wants, so what is the point of that? But I am not worried. God will bring me my justice.”

Jernice’s father, who wished not to be named, echoed the sentiments of the girl’s mother. He briefly recalled the last interaction he had with his daughter. He told reporters, before she left to visit her friend she embraced her father and told him he loved him.

The murder toll for the year now stands at 249, including six females under the age of 25.

Source: (Newsday)

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