Suspect denies being man with the golden gun

| 24/08/2015 | 0 Comments
Cayman News Service

Randy Connor

(CNS): When he took the witness stand Monday, Randy Connor (24) denied being the man with the golden shotgun during a robbery that took place at Blackbeard’s liquor store just before Christmas last year. One of three men on trial for the armed heist at the store in Grand Harbour last December, Connor said he was not involved in the crime and he was not the man carrying the loaded gun, which had been spray-painted gold.

Connor said he was innocent but had been arrested seconds after arriving at Andrew Lopez’ house after his friend had told him to meet him there to organize a lift.

Connor’s alibi story conflicted with testimony given to the court by Lopez when he took the stand last week. However, the third defendant in the case insisted he was not involved in the crime, even though his DNA was found on clothes at Lopez’ house that match those worn by one of the robbers on the CCTV. Connor said the police had accused him of being the man with the golden shotgun because locks of hair could be seen poking out of the hood of one of the robbers on the CCTV and he had locks, but he maintained he was not the robber.

“I repeatedly told them I did not do the robbery,” he said as he claimed to have just arrived at the yard when the police came. He said he had never ridden in or driven the black Ford Escape that was used in the crime and his DNA was not found in that car.

The crown, however, says that, based on circumstantial and forensic evidence, Connor was the man recorded by the CCTV in the store carrying the gold firearm, dressed in a black hooded jacket and black gloves. The three robbers caught on camera fled the scene with more than $5,000 with Lopez at the wheel of his mother’s black Ford Escape, the crown claims.

But the robbers’ escape was short-lived as the police found the getaway vehicle, personal effects stolen in the robbery, more than $5,000 in cash, clothes matching those worn by the robbers and four men at Lopez’ house less than 20 minutes after the heist. Police officers also found the gold spray-painted shotgun in an attic above a room used by Lopez the following day. A handgun that was also used in the crime and said to be carried by Devon Wright, who has also been charged in this case but is not part of the current trial, has never been recovered.

Following the denials of his co-defendants last week, Connor told the court Monday that he, too, had nothing to do with the robbery. He claims that he was working on a car a few houses away from Lopez’ home in Prospect with Wright when the crime took place. He said Wright left him to go see a girlfriend and a few minutes later he left that house as well and walked towards Shamrock Road in the hope of hitching a ride home to his own house in Cruz Lane, where he lives near to co-defendant Bron Webb.

Connor claimed that, as he arrived at Shamrock Road, Lopez passed him in his white Mercedes carrying a male passenger and some bags. Connor said he asked for a ride but Lopez said he could not give him a lift at that time but if he met him at the house then he could make a call and organize a ride for him, as Connor said he did not have a phone. He said he then set off walking back down Prospect Drive towards Lopez’ house and saw Wright in the distance ahead of him, also walking to Lopez’ house.

But when he arrived there he saw the police van and as he walked along the side of the wall, officers told him to freeze and he was arrested.

Connor said that he had only been to Lopez’ house a couple of times before that evening and that it was not, as Lopez suggested, a place where he regularly hung out.

He said that he had given the black jacket and gloves, which after forensic analysis were found to have his DNA on them, to Lopez several months before the date of the robbery but could not explain why Lopez’ DNA was not on the clothes while his was. He acknowledged that he had lied to the police when asked about the jacket, saying he did not own or wear any clothes like. He said that at the time of the interview he was feeling very unwell with sinus problems.

Connor was emphatic that he had never been in the shed in Lopez’ house where police say they spotted him when they arrived at the house and where he was arrested. The police found the black jacket and gloves in that shed and also recovered a blue t-shirt there with his DNA on it. Nevertheless, Connor claimed that the police officer was “saying a complete lie” about where he was arrested, as he protested his innocence to the jury.

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Category: Courts, Crime

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