WESTMORELAND — A 26-year-old man from this parish is in police custody, accused of sexually abusing a four-year-old neighbour. The accusations have left the families of both the accused and the child in shock and disbelief.
“I don’t believe that [he] did that. He is so innocent. He is so calm. He can’t even mash ants, so I don’t understand… But if he didn’t do it, well, somebody else did it,” the child’s paternal aunt told the Jamaica Observer from the family home on Tuesday.
The accused lives across the road from the child and both families get on well. Allegations are that he molested her more than once.
The child’s cousin said she was the one who raised the alarm.
“While bathing her, she told me that her vagina scratches so I ask her what had happened and she said she didn’t remember how many times, but a nuff time. So, I ask her why she don’t tell her parents and she said that they will beat her because a nuff time har mother beat her for things when she tell her,” relayed the cousin.
“After she told me and I looked and stuff, she looked as if she was troubled for real. So, I told the mother that she has to look for herself,” her cousin added.
The child was taken to the hospital for a medical examination and the police were called. She remains in hospital.
“I feel it for the little girl fi a go through dem something here. You hear about 12-year-old and dem something a happen to dem, but a four-year-old? She is very young. So, mi nuh understand dem something here. So, how?” the child’s cousin said, clearly distraught and struggling to make sense of what she said she had been told by the child.
After word of the incident spread within the community last week Wednesday, the accused professed his innocence and said he would remain at home in case the police came in search of him. Lawmen have confirmed that he was taken into custody that day. Up to Wednesday [November 16] afternoon he had not yet been charged.
His mother is convinced of his innocence.
“I asked him and him seh him did not trouble the little girl. The other day I went to the station and him seh, ‘Mummy, I am not guilty.’ And I feel bad because right now mi can’t even eat,” she told the Observer.
“Mi know seh mi son nuh guilty of it. [He’s] calm, quiet and don’t give any trouble. Him will go a work plenty time and come back and say, ‘Mummy, you alright?’ and hold me on my head or kiss me on the jaw.”
A senior citizen from the community, who gave his name as Tony, said he finds it hard to believe that the accused committed such a horrible crime.
“God knows, when mi come and hear seh dat deh youth do dat and a dat deh little baby, mi could not believe seh him could a do dat. Him would a be out ah him mind fi do dat,” he said. “A good boy. Him nuh give no kind of trouble, man. Believe mi.”