29 August 2009

Well, it ain't a murder rap...

...but we'll take it...

It's also notable that Smith took this taxi to the Jane and Finch area, where police say he had his co-accused in Abdikarim's murder, Wendell Damian Cuff, come out and pay $50 for it.
Just another urban criminal genius.



Neo Conservative said...

getting away with murder...

Witnesses refused to help police

Left Crown with 'no prospect of conviction'

Despite a dramatic surveillance video showing a deadly gunman walking backward while firing a handgun into six youths, the prosecution of two suspects fell apart Feb. 26.

Relatives and friends of the lone murder victim, Abdikarim Ahmed Abdikarim, 18, still can't understand the collapse of what seemed a solid Toronto Police case.


hmmm... they don't understand? seems pretty clear to me...


But the five survivors upheld the code on the street and wouldn't help police.

Worse, the video showed the killer in silhouette, plus two unrecognizable men running away as gunfire began -- one close, the other a block away.

Prosecutor Joe Callaghan asked for first-degree murder charges against Owen Anthony Smith -- the accused gunman -- and Wendell Damian Cuff, both 25, to be withdrawn, citing no "prospect of conviction at this time."

Judge Hugh Atwood agreed.

Smith's girlfriend, Jessica Speranza, accused of being an accomplice after the fact, also had her charge withdrawn.

Previously known to police, Smith is again in custody, charged in a recent violent robbery.

Abdikarim's murder began with a gathering of friends on March 14, 2008, outside a lowrise Amaranth Court apartment building in crime-riddled Flemington Park.

Det.-Sgt. Brian Borg said one of two men who approached the group opened fire, muzzle flashes lighting up nearby snow.

Hit several times, Abdikarim died from a single head wound.

The killer and his companion ran in opposite directions, Borg said.

Their ambush was seen around the world when surveillance images police released were posted on YouTube.

The surviving 18- to 21-year-olds, supposedly Abdikarim's friends, left the justice system with no option, Cuff's lawyer, John Struthers, said outside a Finch Ave. courthouse after the two accused men were ordered freed.


Struthers, who insisted Cuff was merely a passerby, said investigators "were having difficulty with the witnesses."

Detectives believed their case was solid and were "disappointed," police spokesman Mark Pugash said.

The freed pair could face charges again with new evidence, but such a turnaround is rare.

The Crown would risk a court battle but Pugash yesterday said "there are no new developments."