Hotelier’s cat led employees to gruesome discovery

first_img“Big Foot” murder trialTwo former employees attached to the South Central Hotel testified before Justice Sandhill Kissoon on Wednesday that it was the pet cat of the deceased that led them to Joseph Jagdeo’s body, which was found bound and gagged in Room 10 of the guesthouse on November 14, 2018.Bryan Leitch of Diamond, East Bank Demerara, is currently on trial for the hotelier’s murder but has denied killing Jagdeo who was known as “Joe” and “Joey”. The prosecution contended that Leitch, also known as “Big Foot”, committed the crime between November 13 and 14, 2013 at South Road,Dead: Joseph JagdeoGeorgetown.During Wednesday’s trial, former maintenance man, Wendell Eastman, called “Buxton”, told the 12-member jury that Leitch, the accused, was initially staying in Room Nine just over a week prior to incident. He however moved to Room 10 after the accused argued with a female, who was staying with him. Eastman, who was living at South Central at that time, claimed that the girl and Leitch argued over the defendant “stealing Mr Jagdeo’s phone” and that she requested that the accused be removed. He told the jury that his hotel owner’s office was some four feet away from Room 10.Eastman said that November 13, 2013 at 07:00h was the last time he saw Jagdeo when he gave him a $1000 to buy a bottle of porridge for him. He said a worker “Trevor” went upstairs for 10 minutes and came back down. He also stated that later on, the bartender went upstairs. After some time, Eastman too went upstairs and called for his boss and never got a response. He further told the jury that sometime after 12:00h on November 14, he saw Jagdeo’s cat lying in front of the office door.“The cat leave the office door and start pushing its paw under the door at Room 10 hollering: meow,” the witness revealed.He said that he informed another worker, Patrick Wilson, called “Bullai” of the cat’s “strange behaivour.” After this, Eastman said he climbed onto a shed and peered through the jalousie window and saw the key to Room 10 on the bed. He claimed that he took a pipe, pulled out the key and gave it to “Bullai” who opened the room. The maintenance man said that at this point, the cat ran into the room, ran back out and started hollering “meow”. He said he told Bullai: “Don’t go in.”Wilson then took the stand and corroborated much of Eastman’s testimony, adding that after he opened the door of Room 10, he saw the body under the bed. He said he took out his cellphone and called the Police. Both witnesses under cross-examination admitted that they did not see the accused after November 13 and that they could not say how the deceased received his injuries.Meanwhile, former bartender at the hotel, Paulette Hollingsworth, testified that she tried several times to reach the owner, Jagdeo, but several calls to his cellphone were unsuccessful.The court also heard that after Jagdeo’s murder, the defendant and his mother, Sharmain Rover, were taken to Police headquarters following a wanted bulletin for Leitch’s arrest. The State’s case is being presented by Prosecutors Lisa Cave and Mandell Moore. Leitch is being represented by Defence Attorneys Hewley Griffith and Lawrence Harris.last_img