There was an emotional send off for 30-year-old Ornella Greaves yesterday, along with more harsh towards Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith by her common-law husband Darren Joseph.
After the funeral service at the Jesus Elam Revival Assembly International church in Malick, Barataria, an emotional Joseph responded angrily to Griffith’s latest comment on Greaves’ killing during a protest along the Beetham Highway on June 30.
At a press briefing on Tuesday, Griffith said the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service had found video footage which showed that when Greaves, a mother of five, was killed, there was no police officer or vehicle around the area for about three minutes before the shooting.
Outraged by these comments, Joseph told Guardian Media, “Gary Griffith have to know I respect him personally and I will always respect him and I want him to know that if he was not the top cop or police, when he went to play football over the weekend, God would have been sitting on chair drinking water watching him play football in heaven.”
He was also upset that Griffith had not yet kept his promise to visit him to discuss the incident.
“I don’t like it, no one has come to my rescue since my wife died, there is nothing for my children, it is the community police in Beetham that are supporting me. These officers know me from when I was nothing and them know I don’t disrespect or go around anyone and it is they who are standing at my side,” Joseph said.
“I could be against them but I am not because they never killed my wife, oh God! Gary Griffith come to me, you did not come to me and you are making all types of statements and not coming to speak to me, I am not a beast.”
Joseph said the way everyone is feeling in the Beetham community after losing Greaves was very hard.
“I think the authorities should have already come to us and see how we are feeling or just to make us feel good,” he said.
He also chided Laventille West MP Fitzgerald Hinds.
“Mr Fitzgerald Hinds called me and told me that people threw water on him, I never throw water on him and I never disrespect anybody,” he said.
He lamented that everyone in authority was making statements but none of them were coming to offer assistance to him and his children.
Greaves’ funeral service was sombre and emotional, with many calling for justice during their tributes.
Speaking about the day she died, her mother Annette Greaves, said, “I asked her what it has on the highway, when I look I walk outside and I saw Ornella passing in the street and she had her phone filming the protest in the area. I asked her where you are going and she said she was going right there. I said let me tell you something, I don’t want you up there because when you hear the police start shooting you might get shot and you know what, it happened, my words came to pass and I am still standing here as a friend and a mother.”
Greaves was later buried at the Tunapuna Public Cemetery.