August 12, 2014

Killing of man by police adjudged as ‘death by misadventure’

A Coroner’s Inquest into the shooting death of Alex Matthews has revealed that his death was as a result of misadventure.

A five-member Coroner’s jury, on August 5, returned a unanimous verdict of “death by misadventure,” following two days of sitting at the Mesopotamia Magistrate’s Court.{{more}}

On January 16, Matthews, 33, was shot and killed by off duty police officer Cuthbert Morris, after Matthews intruded into Morris’ home.

According to police reports, the man, who had a history of mental illness, entered the house at about 4:40 p.m., where the police officer and his common-law-wife were at the time.

According to information given to SEARCHLIGHT, the woman was in the kitchen when the cutlass wielding man entered the house. The police officer, who was in the bedroom at the time, heard his girlfriend screaming and rushed to the kitchen.

The officer reportedly told Matthews he was a police officer and asked him to put down the cutlass.

After this failed, the officer is said to have fired a warning shot. It was then that Matthews is said to have attempted to attack the officer and was shot.

Coroner Rickie Burnett presided over the matter.

According to a press release from the Director of Public Prosecutions Colin Williams, the decision of the Coroner’s Inquest confirms that there was no criminal wrongdoing that caused the death of Matthews.(KW)