On Friday 3rd May 2019 in the waning hours of the day, the Crown charged one of the Able Seamen of the Royal Bahamas Defence Force Javone Seymour with murder. He is charged with murdering one of his fellow officers, a senior Petty Officer Philip Perapall. The scene of the crime of all places the Government House, the official residence of the Governor General Dame Marguerite Pindling. She was not at home at the time but at the Regatta in Georgetown, Exuma.
What we know is still in the realm of the murky.
The news started to leak out just about 3 a m on the morning of Sunday 28th April 2019. The report was that a marine had shot and killed another marine and that the police were on the scene.
Then the other details. Mr. Seymour, the alleged shooter, had worked in Ragged Island on a detail with Mr. Perpall as his senior. He was given permission to return to Nassau for medical treatment but after receiving he medical treatment for a fish hook injuring his hand, he did not return to duty in Ragged Island but malingered in Nassau. However, he told the office in Nassau that he was back in Ragged Island. When Mr. Perpall was called to confirm that that Mr. Seymour was back in Ragged Island, Mr. Perpall told the truth, that the man had not reported back for duty. Mr. Seymour was to face a charge for that alleged untruth.
Is that sufficient for a motive for this crime?
The alleged shooter says that nothing happened the way the Crown says it did. He says he was not on scene at all but at home where he was arrested.
The news is that he knew the situation at Government House at 2 am in the morning. He entered the premises in his uniform. He found a guard sleeping and took that fellows service weapon. He then shot Mr. Perpall as he was sitting on the sofa, then fired two shots at other officers which missed. A third officer gave chase but was unable to stop him.
That is not the official version but there is said to be video tape which backs this up in some say.
Now the more general point. There is something wrong on the face of it for a man to be enter, no matter in uniform or not, shoot a defence officer to death and get clean away without himself being killed. This is if what is said that he confronted other officers is true. How is this possible?
What does this mean for the security at Government House?
The back chat is that the security at Government House is inadequate because the Minister Marvin Dames (yes him again) had ordered the security detail at Government House cutback. There was a manpower shortage at Government House. This shortage exists at all the foreign embassy sites in The Bahamas well, except for the United States Embassy. The others go wanting for staff. It is said that the Defence Fore officers are not available because they are on patrol with the police on the streets trying to deal with the crime problem.
Whatever it is, Marvin Dames must resign. Whatever it is, the security of Government House must be reviewed and improved. Whatever it is, the man who killed P. O. Perpall must be brought to justice.
Number of hits for the week ending Saturday, 4th May, 2019 up to midnight: 161,983
Number of hits for the month of April up to Tuesday, 30th April, 2019 up to midnight: 759,014
Number of hits for the month of May up to Saturday, 4th May, 2019 up to midnight: 80,291
Number of hits for the year 2019 up to Saturday, 4th May, 2019 up to midnight: 3,563,351