Today, the 8th of October, instead of celebrating the life of the late Simone Leandra Garnier we are mourning her death. We are still seeking justice for her unsolved murder even as our island has recorded its forty first homicide for 2017. Many have perished under strange circumstances and their families like us haven’t received an adequate response from the relevant authorities.
“It will be almost five years that we have been trying to find out why your life was bitterly and rudely taken that way”. To those who may not remember, let me refresh your memory: Simon Leandra Garnier was a simple, middle age woman who on the night of the 31st January 2012 was heading home from a Political Party Constituency Executive meeting and was slaughtered on her way home. The word slaughter is used because her throat was sliced a few steps away from her official residence. The following day her lifeless body was found face down in a drain in close proximity to the front door of a male neighbour’s residence; who, upon being questioned, indicated that he was on a fishing trip that night and never realized that there was a dead body in front of his door upon his arrival. This was one of the first homicides of that year and to date no investigator has given a response on what transpired, adding this case to the large number of unsolved cases in Saint Lucia.
In our small island of Saint Lucia many have perished in unbelievable ways and our system has not been able to solve the murders of innocent people. After every homicide in Saint Lucia an investigation unit makes it their duty to be on the scene but what seems to amaze us all, is that there is little to no progress with the investigation or information provided after the cameras have gone out. It is a very sad situation which makes one wonder ‘What evidence if any is even collected from these crime scenes”, because after the yellow tape reminiscent of a movie scene is placed around the scene nothing happens after.
The murder of Simone Leandra Garnier, who lived at Bisee Castries, is another unsolved murder that our justice system is yet to solve. These cases go cold and no one says or informs the relatives, of the status of the investigation. It is evident that not much is done by our justice system to solve the unsolved. When there is a murder in the country, the heads of the crime unit are interviewed like participants from some popularity contest only to disappear after like fruits which are out of season. We would like the relevant authorities to provide us with an update on this case because unlike them, we do miss our dearly beloved and the way she was stolen from us is difficult for us to process. In addition, it is vital that the police interview all the suspects and persons who were in contact with the deceased prior to her horrific murder. This might give them a break that they didn’t recognize or catch up on the first time.
It is evident that not enough is being done to follow up on these cases. For us to move forward all individuals should play a role; our forensic labs should be given priority; our justice system should try to function better and our parents should place more emphasis on raising our children better. Hopefully we will be given information from the relevant authorities concerning our loving mother, daughter, sister, aunt, cousin, friend ‘Simone Leandra Garnier’.