After empanelling a nine member jury of five men and four women, trial judge Bernie Stephenson Brooks reminded them of the oath that they had taken to try the accused fairly.
She asked them to disregard anything that they might have heard in the public domain about the case.
“Do not seek information from any form besides what you will hear from the courtroom and don’t discuss the case while it’s on-going with anyone besides your fellow jurors,” she warned.
In his opening remarks to the jury Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Gene Pestaina reminded them that they were the sole judges of the facts and they were to only listen to what was said in the courtroom.
“One person is charged in this matter….don’t confuse yourself, and your role is to find the accused either guilty or not guilty.
The court heard that on December 26, 2008, Andrew was driving his car and went to turn on Bowers Lane in Goodwill where the accused and some friends were having a bar-b q. He was then asked to give someone a drop and said he had no time.
He then felt a sting from a toy pellet gun, inquired what was happening and got struck a few more times.
It was then that the accused (Albert Steven Jr.) is reported to have stabbed him with a knife which was stuck to his chest.
Pestaina told the jury that Andrew attempted to drive to the Princess Margaret Hospital (PMH) but crashed on his way after being unconscious and help was sought from the emergency services.
Dr. Hendricks Paul operated on Andrew and told the court that he observed him to be in “painful and respiratory distress.”
“He has a 5cm oblique rigid wound in the right fifth inter-costal space (Dr. Paul demonstrates to court) and blood was gushing out from the wound at each breath,” Dr. Paul said.
He told the court that the patient was taken to the operating theatre where a chest tube was inserted in the 7th inter-costal space, and 1,100 ml of blood removed from the chest.
Andrew was then given antibiotics and transfused with 2 units (pints) of blood.
He told the court that the injury he saw was not serious, however, if he had not removed the blood from the chest immediately, the right lung would have collapsed.
Andrew was discharged on January 4, 2009 but was readmitted to hospital less than two weeks later for “shortness of breath and fluid in right chest and was also anemic.”
“The fluid was blood stained- he was transfused with two units of blood and was discharged on January 24, 2009,” Dr Paul told the court.
He said in his opinion the injury was caused by a sharp, thin, long object like a knife or small cutlass.
According to Dr Paul, recovery was expected to take about six months and the degree of force used to inflict the wound depended on the sharpness of the object used.
Under cross examination from defense counsel Gina Dyer Munroe, the doctor stated that he had not seen Andrew with the knife in his chest since it was removed by Dr. Marlon Alexander at the Accident & Emergency department.