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Funeral of De Willem man halted over murder suspicion

Thursday, February 26, 2009

The funeral of a De Willem man was stopped by police on Tuesday after they received information that he might have been murdered and a post-mortem examination later showed that he died from blunt trauma.

Bissoondial Dhanpaul 

Bissoondial Dhanpaul known as Sona and Malik was pronounced dead on arrival at the Leonora Cottage Hospital last Friday, police said in a press statement issued last evening, and a medical certificate which gave the cause of death as hypertension was issued.

According to the police, Dhanpaul had complained of feeling unwell that day before he was taken to the hospital. However, based on new information received the police halted the man's funeral and ordered a post-mortem.

The post-mortem was conducted by pathologist Nehaul Singh who gave the cause of death as "hemorrhage of the brain due to blunt trauma." After the post-mortem results were released the reputed wife and son of Dhanpaul were taken into police custody.

Several neighbours were present at Dhanpaul's Lot 224 Area 'G' De Willem, West Coast Demerara home when this newspaper visited shortly after 4 pm yesterday. Stabroek News learnt from them that Dhanpaul's reputed wife, Lolyn, and their eldest son, Nishal, were taken into custody by ranks from the Leonora Police Station.

According to the neighbours, who explained they were only in the woman's house until she was released by the police, it was a "sad story". Dhanpaul, they said, drank a lot and had been unemployed for several years.

"He used to drink he rum steady and would cuss she up all de time," neighbours told this newspaper. "He would ride around on he bicycle when he drunk and he used to fall down steady."

Further, neighbours said they were told by Lolyn that Dhanpaul woke up about 5 am on Friday, went to the bathroom, and returned to bed and later said he wasn't feeling well.

"Lolyn say she de still in bed but she know when he get up and go lie down back...she said that when she get up later she go and shake he fuh wake he up but when she turn he over he de done dead so she run with he ah hospital," one neighbour present at the Lot 224 De Willem house explained.
"That woman deh, she does wuk like a man," yet another neighbour said. "She does go catch shrimp and sell it."
The woman and her son remained in police custody up to press time.

Meanwhile, relatives of the deceased told this newspaper that because Dhanpaul drank a lot he was frequently beaten and abused.
"You know how much time he does come at me house...every time he get beat he does run come ah me to show me wa dem do to he," one of Dhanpaul's niece said.

The woman said that her uncle had developed his drinking problem over the past decade. Although he didn't work, the woman reported, relatives who live overseas would send money so that he could maintain his family.

"Lolyn de tell we that de morning (Friday) me uncle get up about 5 o'clock and go to de toilet and then he go back and sleep. She say she de cutting up pumpkin at de time," Dhanpaul's niece recalled. "After he wake up back she say he tell she that he na feel good and so she take he to de hospital."
The deceased man's relatives told this newspaper that Lolyn had discouraged them from viewing Dhanpaul's body which is at the West Demerara Regional Hospital mortuary. According to them, the woman was rushing the funeral and refused to wait a few days for Dhanpaul's relatives to travel here.

"When we de go visit she after he dead people in de street de tell we" that he was beaten three days before,  the dead man's niece said.