By Bibi Khatoon
A Plaisance mother of three, Melissa Playter, who is in custody for the murder of her reputed husband, Victor Roberts, reportedly suffered daily physical abuse at the hands of the victim.
“Every time he gets a problem, he always buying a new chopper (Knife) or whatever to deal with her,” the man’s cousin, Roxanne told News Room Monday.
Police reported that the couple was involved in a heated argument at their Lot 41 Prince William Street, Plaisance, East Coast Demerara home when Playter allegedly stabbed the man once in the left side chest with a knife on Sunday afternoon.
During a visit to the home on Monday, blood stains were seen in the walkway to the steps of the home, indicating where the incident occurred.
Roxanne, who was an eyewitness to the crime, told the News Room that she was conversing with the 25-year-old Playter when Roberts, 38, arrived and assaulted the woman as he believed the conversation was about him.
“He [Roberts] picked up the bicycle and threw it on her [Melissa]. He then ran into the shop, pick up his cutlass,” and assaulted her, Roxanne recalled.
Roxanne claimed that the murder was as a result of self-defence.
“She [Melissa] picked up a mop stick and it hit the knife which ended up going into his stomach but she did not bore him willfully,” the dead man’s cousin said.
Neighbours also told News Room that it was not the first time the woman was abused.
“We saw her running many times from him because this was not just quarrelling and the fights were actually physical and in public,” a neighbour, Vincent Hetsberger said.
He told the News Room that as a result of the constant fights, persons in the community boycotted the business.
Hetsberger noted that efforts were made to talk to the couple to change their behaviour but to no avail.
A neighbour and friend of the 25-year-old woman, Lisa recalled an incident in which the accused was chopped by the now dead man.
“This girl get a long chop to her face, he stabbed her…one time my child father saved her from him.
“He run this girl round and round this yard with a cutlass and broadside her. He is constantly beating this girl. This girl does get lashes ‘tea, breakfast and dinner’. His family knows the type of person he is,” the neighbour said.
She further noted that Playter made several attempts to leave the relationship but Roberts would convince her that he would change and take her home.
“One time she left and say she was going to make a better life…He keeps going back and bring this girl and then telling she all kind of things,” Lisa said.
There are reports that Playter previously stabbed Roberts causing injuries to his lung. However, he refused to press charges.
Roberts was the father of one of the suspect’s three children and they managed a grocery shop in the lower flat of the apartment house.