I have an uncanny way of being able to find the Ghost. Case in point the “Scotland Yard Incident.”
It all started one day in 2002 when I came home to find a rather unsettling message on my answering machine. It was from a Detective Sergeant Michael Murfin from Scotland Yard asking me to please give him a call. He left a phone number from the BVI.
I immediately ask myself what I possibly might have done to incur the interest of this venerable law enforcement agency.
I rack my brain. What could they want? What did I do? Should I call? I can’t think of anything and so I decide to call.
“Hello, Detective Sergeant Michael Murfin Scotland Yard, who’s calling?”
“Gerald Singer from St. John”
“Oh good, Mr. Singer. I’m glad you called. We’re coming to St. John in a few days and we’d like to talk to you.”
“What’s this about?” I ask.
“We’ll talk about it when we get there,” he answers, “we’ll call,” and he hangs up.
Mystery still not solved.
Three days later the phone rings.
“Detective Sergeant Michael Murfin, we’re at Cap’s Place in Cruz Bay. Can you come down and talk to us?”
So I go down to Cap’s along with my then girlfriend and there sitting at one of the tables are two casually dressed agents along with their wives.
I identify myself, join them and take a seat looking out at the street.
“So what’s the story?” I ask.
Well, the story goes like this:
The two agents are on Tortola investigating a murder, in which the local BVI police department are getting nowhere. The Scotland yard boys, however are pretty sharp and they have a good lead, a witness or a suspect who was in jail and there was this guy sharing a cell with him that they felt had some information. They didn’t want to approach the guy directly or ask too many questions locally, because they were afraid that the guy would be suspicious and hide or run. In their investigation they find that this fellow with the information has a friend on St. John that could act as an intermediary and that friend is me, and the individual they’re looking for is Curtney Chinnery, the Ghost.
“Would you talk to him,” they ask.
Before I can even answer the question I look out onto the street and who is walking by but none other than the Ghost himself.
“Excuse me a moment,” I say to the agents and walk out onto the street.
I walk over to Ghost and explain the situation and ask him if he wants to talk to the agents. He says, OK and we walk over to Cap’s.
The agents deputize the Ghost on the spot and the information that they gather from him proves to be helpful in the ultimate solving of the case.
Island Sun August 2, 2002
“Man charged in Bally Murder Case”
On 30 July, Darren Hodge, age 25, a serving prisoner at Balsam Ghut was charged with the murder of Jason Bally. A police sources stated that this case has been unsolved since October 1999. Ag. Commissioner Barry Webb reviewed the case last year and recommended a renewed investigation.
His Excellency Governor Frank Savage agreed to two officers from New Scotland Yard being attached to the investigation team which has been led by Inspector Alexis Charles. The Scotland Yard officers are Detective Sergeant Michael Murfin and Detective Kenny Allen. Experienced RVIPF officers and Attorney General’s office have worked closely with the officers from London for the past six weeks to bring this investigation forward.
Bally, 25, was shot in the street outside the Domino Gas Station in Sea Cows Bay on 15 October 1999. A native of Trinidad, the victim had been employed at Foxy’s Bar on Jost Van Dyke.According to police, investigations revealed that Bally and a male companion were walking along the Sea Cows Bay Public Road in the vicinity of Domino Gas Station when a black male approached them from the gas station area. A loud blast was heard and Bally fell to the ground while his companion escaped unharmed and alerted residents of the area. On examining the gas station police found that an attempted burglary had taken place and recovered items used in that attempt.
While police have gathered enough evidence to bring a murder charge against Darren Hodge, the investigation is still ongoing. There were a number of suspects involved in the attempted break-in of the gas station and efforts continue to collect evidence to prosecute them for burglary and to determine what part, if any, they played in the murder.
The investigation team is still keen to hear from anybody with information about the case. In particular, assistance is sought regarding two gas tanks left at Domino Gas Station by the suspects. It has never been established where these came from, but it is suspected that they were stolen from someone on Tortola. Additionally, the weapon used in the murder is believed to have been a handgun that has not yet been recovered.
Police sources further noted that on 16 December 2001, Darren Hodge who was remanded to H.M. Prison for burglary escaped but later turned himself into police on 17 December. Hodge was due to be released on 19 August 2002, however due to the present matter he will have to reappear in the Magistrate’s Court on 23 October.
Anyone with information regarding this case is asked to contact the investigation team on a dedicated telephone number: 468-9136. All calls will be treated in the strictest confidence.