Accused learns in court that acid attack victim had died

BY TANESHA MUNDLE
Observer staff reporter
mundlet@jamaicaobserver.com

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

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A St Andrew man who reportedly doused his ex-spouse and their child with acid while they were asleep is to have his assault occasioning grievous bodily harm charge upgraded to murder.

The accused, 39-year-old Richard Salmon of Seaview Gardens in St Andrew, was reportedly upset with the woman for ending their relationship.

It is alleged that he was not aware that his daughter was also asleep in the bed.

His ex-spouse, Teri Ann Morris, who was a cashier at MegaMart in Kingston, succumbed to her injuries last Wednesday at Kingston Public Hospital.

Consequently, when the matter was mentioned in the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court yesterday, Parish Judge Maxine Ellis was told that a murder charge is to be laid against Salmon.

Their seven-year-old daughter remains in hospital.

Police reports are that on September 21, Morris, 30, and her daughter were asleep at home in Greenwich Farm, St Andrew, when Salmon allegedly entered the house and threw a chemical substance on them, causing severe burns all over their bodies.

The two were rushed to hospital. Salmon allegedly fled to St Elizabeth, but was later caught.

“You mean that somebody throw acid on somebody causing death?” an astonished Judge Ellis asked after hearing the allegations.

“It is long time I don't see something like this; now you see the gravity of the situation,” she continued.

She then enquired if Salmon, who had a blank expression on his face, was okay.

“When you hear these things you have to ask if he had talked to anyone,” she said.

Attorney Kymberli Whittaker, who is representing Salmon, then told the court that it appears that her client has been traumatised since the incident and requested counselling for him.

The judge then asked Salmon if he had heard that the mother of his child had died. He told her it was the first time he was hearing about Morris's death.

“That would be bad, shocking news to anyone,” the judge then remarked.

She then gave instructions for Salmon to receive counselling while in custody, noting that, despite the circumstances of the case, he is a human being.

Whittaker, in the meantime, told the court that the matter would be fast-tracked to the Circuit Court and was told that as soon as the post-mortem was ready the matter could be transferred.

Salmon was then remanded until November 30.

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