Martin admits sex with Schirn

| 12/01/2010

Cayman Islands News, Grand Cayman local news, murder trial(CNS): The man on trial for the murder of Sabrina Schirn has admitted that he met and had sex with her on the day she was believed to have been killed. However, Randy Martin has denied murdering the 21-year-old and said when they parted she drove off in the white vehicle she came in. He said that he had lied to the police when he was first interviewed about knowing her and admitted they had met in 2008. Martin claimed that Schirn had visited him on several occasions at the prison farm to deliver cigarettes or drugs and that they had also had sex.

Martin revealed his connection with the victim when he was called to the stand on Monday morning (11 January) as the defence opened it case, following the closure of the prosecution’s case just before the seasonal court break.

Immediately as court resumed, David Evans QC, Martin’s counsel, wasted no time calling the defendant to the stand, where he began examining Martin’s long criminal record of some 29 offences. Evans made it clear to the court that the crimes were for burglary, robbery and drug related offences. Aside from one assault charge many years ago when he served six months,h there was no history of violence on his long wrap sheet. Evans also asked Martin about his left arm, which the defendant said had been injured in a motor cycle accident in 2001 and he could not use it or grip anything with it.

During an intense day of testimony Martin stood in the dock throughout, giving a detailed account of his movements on the day Schirn was killed, and denied murdering the girl. He said that, although he knew of Schirn before 2008, they did not meet face to face until she began bringing Martin’s former girlfriend to the prison farm in East End when she was also visiting her own boyfriend of the time, his nephew Lance Myles.

Martin told the court that he and Schirn first had sex soon after he met her in April 2008, even though she was meant to be visiting with Myles. He indicated to the court that a number of women were visiting the inmates and engaging in sexual activity at the farm with several men. He said his own former girlfriend had also had sex with at least four other prisoners, which is why, when she became pregnant, he broke up with her as he did not believe it was his baby.

He said that when he stopped seeing his girlfriend he did not see Schirn either for several months. After Lance Myles was released from the prison, however, Martin told the court that she began to meet with him again in January of 2009 at the farm to bring drugs and cigarettes and sometimes they would have sex.

Talking about the day that it is believed Schirn was murdered, he said they had made the arrangements to meet several days before. Martin said that soon after arriving on the farm he recovered his mobile phone from its hiding place and then called Schirn,, who confirmed she had the ganja and was on her way to the farm in a white vehicle. Working on the tomato patch that day, Martin said when he saw a white car drive by the farm he told the prison officer on duty, Officer Hunter, that he was going down to “take a dump”, an excuse he used whenever he was picking up drugs or meeting people who had come to see him at the farm.

Martin also told the court that he had informed fellow inmates that he was going to see someone to get weed and they should whistle if the guards came looking for him, as he knew he could not be away too long before they would notice.

When he arrived at the area near the bananas, where he said they had arranged to meet (a different location from where Schirn’s body was found), he said she had the ganja and cigarettes. He said it was exactly 10:38 when he looked at his watch as he greeted her. Martin then told the court that the couple kissed and caressed before engaging in a sexual act, but he claimed he stopped because she was menstruating.

He said that she began to use one of his gloves to clean herself but the glove was dirty so he gave her his prison rag to use instead which she took to a near by faucet and washed herself. Soon after that he heard one of the inmates whistle the warning signal so he quickly took the ganja and cigarettes from Schirn as he headed back to the farm and she got back in the car and drove away.

Martin than said that as he made his way back towards the farm, Schirn called him and warned him that the guard was at the gate and to say that she would meet him again the next Wednesday, which was 18 March.

Asked if he called her again after that day, he said he did not as they had made arrangements to meet, but he had called other people when he heard she was missing. Asked about his denial to the police, he said he was unsure of the situation and worried about having met her close to the time she was supposed to have disappeared, so he thought he would deny knowing her until he knew what was happening.

When asked about a lock of hair which had been removed from his cell, he said it was his hair which he kept when he had his dreadlocks cut when he came to prison. The paper that was wrapped around it with the name ‘Sabrina Schurn’ (misspelled) was prison office paper, he said, and it was not his handwriting. He told the court he had wrapped the lock in another piece of paper, which was still in the bag and had traces of the hair on it.

Martin told the court he did not kill Schirn, and when cross examined by Solicitor General Cheryl Richards, he said there was only love between him and Schirn. He deniedever assaulting Schirn, as claimed by his former girlfriend, who had refused to testify against him in the court but had submitted a statement to the police. He repeatedly stated that the assault she described to the police had never happened.

“Nothing like that had ever occurred, ma’am,” he told Richards several times. He said that his former girlfriend’s suggestion that he believed Sabrina was connected to his brother’s attempted murder was wrong and she had told lies about him. Martin insisted that he knew for certain who was involved with that shooting. He told the court it was another Sabrina that had made the call regarding the pizza along with another man. He said he knew Sheldon Brown, the man convicted of the crime, was not the man who had shot his brother, Fernando Martin.

Richards pressed Martin during cross examination to explain the exact details of where he and Schirn were having sex and in particular what had happened to the glove after they had engaged in the sex act, as well as time lines on where he was and when they spoke on the phone again and what he had done with the drugs when he left Schirn.

Richards will continue her cross examination of Martin’s evidence on Tuesday morning, and the trial is scheduled to continue incourt one throughout the week. However, defence counsel have not yet stated how many more, if any, witnesses they will be calling to testify on Martin’s behalf.

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