Coffee Break Special: The X6 Murder Trial So Far...
The trial of the alleged X6 killer, Patrick Powell aka “Nigga Charley” began last week. Almost 6 years later and the case has been brought to court and the questions surrounding the murder of 17 year old Khajeel Mais on that faithful day in July 2011 could finally be answered…or so we thought…
The trial began as expected, with controversy. The family of Khajeel was warned that their social media posts were to stop as they could be corrupting the potential jurors with a bias when trying the case. These posts which were mainly done by Khajeel’s sister on Facebook and Instagram and which included a TV interview highlighted the family’s frustration with the constant postponement of the trial and were highly critical of Jamaica’s Justice System. These postponements were as a result of the absence of defence lawyer Patrick Atkinson who would’ve been unavailable until recently. Another ruling was also made opening the trial to the public.
But the trial finally got underway with Khajeel’s mother, Allania Mais taking the stand and recounting what happened on that day. She stated that Khajeel had helped her out at her business and she had dropped him off at a taxi stand on Crane Avenue in the afternoon as he was going to a fete at Meadowbrook High School, to which she had changed her mind as she had other business to tend to. Instead she told Khajeel to take a taxi to the high school instead of walking to his friend’s house as he had originally planned. She would later state that she received a phone call that taxi had been shot at and Khajeel had been injured. She then recounted watching him take his last breath before she was sedated….
Defence attorney Deborah Martin then questioned Mais about her son’s conduct at school and highlighted that the Khajeel had both attendance and behavioural issues at school along with a pending matter before the juvenile court. Martin also highlighted that Khajeel had been suspended more than once from the school and that she had been called in more than once on account of her son’s behaviour and issues with staff.
Up next on the stand were Detective Sergeant Robert Robinson and Detective Corporal Jerome Williams who testified that they visited the scene of the crime and recovered a nine millimetre spent shell. They also testified that the car that Khajeel had been travelling in had what appeared to be gunshot holes in the rear window and rear license plates.
Another witness, Wayne Green an auto body, specialist backed up the Sergeant’s claim stating that two days later a BMW X6 was brought in to be repaired.
On Friday, taxi driver Wayne Wright gave his testimony about the incident. Wright who is otherwise known as “Youngie” claimed that he had just left the Shell gas station on Manning’s Hill road to have a drink with a friend, a nearby vendor and stopped to make a purchase at the Havendale Plaza. Upon returning, he saw his friend standing with a male later identified as Khajeel. Stating that Khajeel wanted a taxi, Wright informed him that cost would be $300. Leaving the area, Wright claimed that the weather at that time was rainy and the roadway was foggy but Khajeel told him to “drive up fast nuh rasta man” and he increased speed although with the weather being so bad that he could only see directly in front of him. He went on further to state that within 30 seconds of turning onto Havendale Drive, his car hit another motor vehicle and he reversed before trying to park his vehicle and assess the damage. But before he could do this, he claimed “I was about to put the vehicle in P, when I heard BOW!... pure gunshots start fire, then di yute fly over pon mi.” He stated that he then ducked under his steering wheel and hurriedly drove off all the while with shots being fired at his vehicle. When asked if he saw who was shooting at his vehicle, he stated “no Sir but when mi a drive pass one more shot fire.”
Wright then found himself in a bind as he then spent the entire morning denying information that he gave police officers. This included statements that claimed he HAD seen the shooter with the gun and that he knew him as “Nigga.”
When asked about knowing 17 year old Khajeel Mais, Wright claimed that he had never met the youth before that day. But Prosecutor Jerome Taylor pressed him by stating that he had told Officer Hines that he had known Khajeel attended Kingston College. Wright answered by saying that had none of the above and that it was all done by other persons.
“Did you ever say I have known Khajeel from he was a young boy, he is from Crane Avenue and he is now 17. He attend Kingston College?” the prosecutor asked
“Who say that, me?” The witness asked in a surprised tone.
“No, I never say nothing, never,” he added.
“Didn’t you tell Officer Hines that Khajeel was attending KC,” Taylor questioned.
“No! I couldn’t know him school, I couldn’t know that, all a dem deh is put up by unuh,” he said..
He would later go on to state that he did however tell the officers that Khajeel was about 16 or 17 and that hes was from Crane Avenue before going on to denying other parts of his five year old statement which claimed that he also told the officers that he has seen the vehicle he had hit and that it was more blue than black with a a BMW logo and that it was an SUV type or X5 or "a big back vehicle." This was a contradiction as on the first day, he had testified that he had not seen the vehicle he had collided with as shots started firing soon after, which along with the rain and fog made it hard to see.
The Prosecution then moved to have Wright designated as a hostile witness meaning that he is no longer in support of the Prosecution who called him to tell a particular story as his comments and statements are now contradictory based his previous statements and what he is saying when testifying. But Wright dropped a bombshell when he claimed that the Police had tried to persuade him to lie about the vehicle.
He then went on to state that he was giving a second statement when the officer tore up it up after receiving a phone call then taking him to the crime scene and then to his home. After which a Inspector Thompson –who Wright said had told him to lie about the vehicle and the person known as “Nigga”- came and took him to the station again.
Wright went on to deny almost every aspect of the statement he had given including that he had told the police he was driving behind a dark coloured BMW X6 “more dark than blue” on Havendale Drive on Highland Drive and was about two feet from the vehicle and that he was so close because he wanted to overtake the SUV.
“Did you tell the police ‘I tried to get around but he was in the middle of the road?’” Taylor asked.
“I tell him I was going around and it touch,” Wright replied.
The prosecutor them asked him if when he had earlier testified that he had bumped into a vehicle out of nowhere and ‘the touch’ that he just mentioned if they are not two different things and he disagreed.
“You are trying to make it into two different things. You a make statement for me to talk and I am not doing it,” Wright told the prosecutor.
The day ended when the lead prosecutor made an application for the matter to be recessed until Monday.
Businessman Patrick Powell has been charged with the shooting death of 17 year old Khajeel Mais in what prosecutors call a severe case of road rage. He has also been charged with shooting at taxi driver Wayne Wright with Intent to cause harm.
The trial continues today Monday, October 24
UPDATE 11:32AM: PATRICK POWELL HAS BEEN FREED OF ALL CHARGES AS THE CROWN COULD NOT PROVE HE WAS AT THE SCENE OF THE CRIME.