A forty-nine-year-old St Mark resident who was charged in connection with the death of his twenty-three-year-old girlfriend may be forced to make alternative arrangements for legal representation.
Mitch Phillip a joiner by profession, appeared before Magistrate Francine Foster at the Gouyave Magistrate Court last Thursday on a charge of non-capital murder, a charge that makes him the main suspect in the death of his lover Shanelle Alexis 23, who was pronounced dead on arrival at the General Hospital after what was said to be a short period of illness some three weeks ago. Phillip may be forced to find new legal representation when he returns to court on July 16th in Victoria.
Phillip was represented in court by defence lawyer Derek Sylvester however, this newspaper was told that shortly after Wednesday’s sitting Phillip was told that due to new developments he would have to make a different arrangement for legal representation, as Sylvester who was also representing Phillip in a matter related to custody of his children would no longer be available.
Sources told the Informer that Sylvester’s decision to excuse himself from the case was made after he found out that he is also representing a member of the victim’s family in other matters and therefore it would be unethical or even a conflict of interest to sit in on that particular matter.
Phillip whom it is said maintains his innocence in that matter, was formally charged last weekend after he was taken into police custody for the third time, following new evidence emanating from a second autopsy performed on Alexis’ body, by Trinidad born pathologist Professor Dr Hubert Daisley.
Sources told our news desk that in a seven-page report submitted by the professor; he attributed Alexis’ death to be hypovolemic shock brought on by haemorrhaging as a result of what is believed to be induced abortion and the rupturing of a major blood vessel in the pelvis by a blunt object.
Shortly after the incident, Phillip told our news desk that on the night in question, he was making love with his girlfriend after a long day in his workshop when she began to complain that she was not feeling well. He said she also appeared to be feeling weak, but things took a turn for the worse when he took her to the house.
According to Phillip, Alexis whom he described as the love of his life and who ran his business operation collapsed in his arms that night, he added that he sought the assistance of the police and applied CPR. When none of the above worked, he said he was able to get a vehicle and rush to the general Hospital with her, however, on arrival, Alexis was pronounced dead.
Phillip was charged with causing Alexis’ death after two autopsy reports carried out on her body showed massive internal bleeding.
What caused the bleeding remains anyone’s guess however the experts believe it was caused by a blunt object. There are also reports that Alexis who already had two children two years and one year old respectively, was pregnant with her third child.
With a charge of non-capital murder now hanging over his head, Phillip faces life in prison if found guilty. He returns to court on July 16th hopefully for the commencement of a preliminary hearing that would determine whether or not he has a case to answer to before a judge and jury.