Regional

Portland rocked by two murders within 12 hours

BY EVERARD OWEN Observer correspondent

Friday, January 17, 2014    

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Two women were killed in Portland within 12 hours between Tuesday and Wednesday sending shock waves throughout the normally peaceful parish.

Both Ute Sobtaier, a 48-year-old German, who lived at Park Mount in the Nonsuch area; and 37-year-old Janice Linton of Baker Hill in Hope Bay died from stab wounds.

Deputy Superintendent of Police Patrick Bennett, who is in charge of operations, said the police have taken into custody two persons, including a woman, in connection with Sobtaier's killing, and have detained Linton's spouse in connection with her death.

"This is unusual for Portland as we do not have murders at this rate," said Bennett.

Sobtaier, who was found in a pool of blood outside her house about 11:00 pm Tuesday, received several stab wounds to the abdomen. The German was said to have been living here for about seven years and was about to formalise her immigration status.

Just under 12 hours later, Linton was stabbed to death, allegedly in a dispute with her common-law husband.

"We have the suspect in custody," DSP Bennett told the Jamaica Observer. "We regret the loss of life and we are appealing to all the persons in this division to come to the police if you have any conflict that you believe you cannot handle [because] if you try to resolve it by yourself it may cause death, as what happened in this case."

On Wednesday, people in Hope Bay described Linton as very helpful and a community person.

"She is one-of-a-kind and so helpful to the community and goes the extra mile to help everyone; she will not say no," said Jeffery Wilson. "I saw her yesterday as she was on her way to the airport and she was dressed up and I said to her, 'are you going to get married?' and she said no, she was on her way to the airport with my mom. It is so sad."

Linton's brother, Donovan Moore, was in shock. "This morning when I was at work I get a message from her friend say I must go up by the house 'cause dem hear some dispute last night up at the house. Dem call from early and not getting her. Me leave from work and go up there and the door was locked and I kicked it in and... when I go in I see nobody inside the house. Mi go in her bedroom and me see her hand hang out and mi lift up the sheet and look; mi see her throat cut out and like something did a pound her head. So me come out and call the police," he said.

Linton's son, 20-year-old Raheem Gaynor, could not hold back the tears. "...everybody rate her in a the town," he said. "A friend call mi and say mi mother dead, so me leave and come up."

In addition to Raheem, Linton is survived by two other children -- Javaney Thompson, 14, and Triffina Gaynor, 19.

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