Key witness in double murder case dies

Terrel Mackey, a key witness in a double murder and kidnapping case, has died.

A key witness to the 2013 murders and kidnapping of senior immigration officer Shane Gardiner and his girlfriend Tishka Braynen has died.

Terrel Mackey, a former co-conspirator, who was granted immunity from prosecution after he became a cooperating witness, was found dead in his car on Saturday, July 1. Foul play is not suspected.

Mackey’s testimony helped the prosecution secure convictions against Zintworn Duncombe, Daniel Coakley, James Johnson and Cordero Saunders in 2016.

However, the men’s convictions were overturned in 2020 and a new trial was ordered after the Court of Appeal found that a material irregularity occurred at their trial.

The Court ruled that the trial judge failed to thoroughly investigate an altercation between an alternate juror and the jury forewoman.

The defendants are currently on bail awaiting a retrial. Mackey’s sudden death is unlikely to affetct the upcoming trial since his testimony could still be entered into evidence.