Son was ‘fine’ last time mum saw him
Angela Best saw her son Corey Best hours before he died and he was fine with no cuts or bruises about his body.
That was the testimony of Best yesterday, who was one of four witnesses as the inquest into her son’s death continued in the Coroner’s Court before Coroner Manilla Renee at the Cane Garden Municipal Court Complex, Cane Garden, St Thomas.
At the time of his death on April 13, 2017, the 34-year-old tiler, of No. 22 Hopefield, Charnocks, Christ Church, was in police custody in connection with a report of the theft of a cash tin containing a cell phone, Canadian cash, a passport, and credit cards belonging to his visiting cousin David Kola.
Best told the court she went to the station at about 1:09 p.m. after her son had called and asked her to bring the keys for the cash tin to the police station.
“Corey was whispering not to believe what Station Sergeant [Leslie] Arthur was saying. He said he would talk to me when he got out. That is the only communication I had with my son. He wanted to speak with me but he was told to sit down and don’t move,” she explained, adding that her son told her officers wanted to blame him but he knew who had the cash tin.
She said the last time she saw her son was when he was being taken to the cells by Arthur. She said he was not resisting, even though the officer had him “gripped up by his pants and had all his testicles printing out”.
“He just looked back and said, ‘Mum, talk to this man’. I got up and said ‘Excuse me, sir’ because I wanted to talk with him, but he paid me no mind. Officer [Jason] Green, who was at the desk, told me to go and sit down,” she said, adding that she never lodged a complaint even after Arthur took her to his office or following the death of her son. She said she was taken to Arthur’s office where he took the items from the cash tin, putting tape on them and talking with her.
She said he continued asking her about the tin before asking how she was getting home.
“I told him I was catching the bus and he offered me a ride home. I never indicated I wanted a ride . . . At the time, I did not know why he offered the ride. I subsequently said to myself [after hearing Corey had hanged himself] that he wanted to get me from the station as fast as possible,” she said.