Community ReportCrimeEditorialFeaturesLettersNews

Doctor’s young ‘friend’ robbed and killed him to buy a car

18-year-old Lenrick Mosai Byass, Dr. Roach and 
Hilton Oliver Junior Franklin

BY: Michael Jordan

A story of a cold-blooded plot by two young men to lure, rob and kill biomedical specialist Dr. Colin Roach is the latest twist to emerge in the four day investigation into his murder.

That sordid story, with Guinness and other alcoholic beverages in the mix, has come in a confession by 18-year-old Lenrick Mosai Byass, who, along with 19 year old Hilton Oliver Junior Franklin, have both admitted to being involved in events that ended in Tuesday’s gruesome killing.

The teen is claiming that Franklin, a taxi driver and frequent visitor to Dr. Roach’s clinic, had planned to rob Dr. Roach to raise money to buy a car.

That plan ended with Dr. Roach being bludgeoned to death in his clinic, after which Mosai and Franklin stole US$600 from their victim, and callously stripped him of two gold rings.

The two rings the prime suspect was captured with in his crotch on Friday morning

The teen made this claim on Friday afternoon, shortly after police arrested him at a Robb Street call centre where he was also employed.

He had $42,000 in his possession, which is his share of the stolen cash. Franklin, who was captured in Berbice early Friday morning, had US $200 and the doctor’s rings stashed in his underwear.

Franklin has claimed that he struck Dr. Roach on the head with a ‘metal object’, after the physician, under the influence of alcohol, pushed him towards a cot (bed) in the Kingston clinic.

Byass and Franklin had known each other for some three years, since they had both worked at the call centre where Byass is employed.

The teen claimed that Franklin had told him some days prior that he frequents Dr. Roach’s office and had observed that he had “large amounts of cash.”

Franklin, who is a taxi driver, had allegedly said that he wanted to raise the cash to buy a car.

The two friends then devised a plan to rob the doctor.

The teen said that last Tuesday, they drove to Water Street in Franklin’s black Fielder Wagon. They parked there and boarded a taxi which took them to Dr. Roach’s office.

He stated that Dr. Roach greeted them at the entrance and they went to his office.  He claimed that the physician then took them in his vehicle to a Regent Street location where the doctor bought alcoholic beverages. They then returned to the officewhere they consumed the beverages. According to the teen, Dr. Roach then gave him some money to buy ‘Guinness’ at a nearby location.

Byass reportedly said that when he returned, he saw Dr. Roach lying on the floor of his clinic. He observed that the physician had a head wound and appeared to be dead.

He reportedly asked Franklin what had happened and Franklin reportedly stated why he had killed Dr. Roach.

It is alleged that the two youths then took US $600 from the slain man and pulled two gold rings from his fingers.

Contrary to what Franklin claimed about a male worker assisting him, Byass has said that it was Franklin who unplugged the DVR and a nearby camera. They also picked up the murder weapon and packed up the glasses and bottles of alcohol.

After clearing the area of fingerprints and other evidence, Franklin and Byass drove back to Water Street in Dr. Roach’s vehicle.

They then placed the rest of the liquor in Franklin’s car and drove over the Demerara Harbour bridge. During the journey, they allegedly disposed of the murder weapon, as well as the DVR, camera, bottles and glasses.

On Wednesday, Franklin reportedly changed the US currency at a Water Street location. The two divided the cash.

Pressed on Friday night about the new revelations, Crime Chief Wendell Blanhum would only confirm that a teenager, arrested Friday afternoon, had confessed to his involvement in Dr. Roach’s murder.

He said that Dr. Roach’s two male employees remain in custody.