Exclusive | How ‘quiet’ youth turns suspect in murder that rocks the nation

Markland Hayles – also called ‘CJ’, and his girlfriend Tashieka McKay

Relatives of the pregnant woman, who was killed yesterday, said her boyfriend quickly became the prime suspect partly because he had a ‘fuss’ with her and also was acting in a ‘suspicious’ manner.

There were also lingering concerns over the paternity of the unborn child.

The boyfriend and murder suspect – Markland Hayles, otherwise known as ‘CJ’, was in police custody in Clarendon, but he died there in a case of suspected suicide this morning, June 21.

Police locked him up yesterday afternoon – a few hours after his girlfriend, Tashieka McKay, who was eight months pregnant, was found murdered.

The 21-year-old woman was discovered with her throat slashed in bed at her home in the farming community of Rhoden Hall, near Kellits town, Clarendon.

Police nabbed the boyfriend in another rural community called Mason River – also in Clarendon.

The boyfriend is from Mason River, but he sometimes stayed at his girlfriend’s residence in Rhoden Hall.

Reports are that he slept at the woman’s home on Saturday night (June 19), and was seen there the following morning.

He eventually left the premises, and reportedly claimed that he went to search for mangoes.

He returned to the girlfriend’s house.

It is said that, after the boyfriend returned, he went about the premises asking if anyone saw his girlfriend, adding that he could not locate her.

He later left the home again.

The woman’s relatives, who live next-door, eventually became concerned. That’s because the deceased woman’s four-year-old daughter visited them, and disclosed that her mom was not responding to her.

Based on that information, one of the slain woman’s relatives visited the house, where the pregnant woman was seen slaughtered in bed.

Relatives of the deceased said they immediately suspected that the boyfriend was involved in the killing partly because he claimed that he could not find his girlfriend when she was indeed inside the house.

One of the bereaved relatives argued that, had the boyfriend raised an alarm about finding the body, the girlfriend’s family initially would have ruled him out as a suspect because he is usually quiet and well-mannered.

“Mi tek him as mi son same way,” said the mother of the deceased woman.

She added: “If CJ did come find Tashieka dead, mi would say a nuh him [kill her] to how him move. A nuh smaddy weh party; a nuh smaddy weh smoke or anything [like that] weh mi know of.”

The girlfriend’s family, in the meantime, said their loved-one and her boyfriend had a ‘fuss’ the day before the woman’s body was found. It is not clear what caused that ‘fuss’.

ALSO READ: Suspect ‘confessed’ to murder of girlfriend, also commits suicide


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