Chantelle Chetcuti murder: Passer-by says he saw fatal altercation

Eyewitness saw murder victim on the ground, shaking, with knife inside her temple

Chantelle Chetcuti, and Justin Borg, her alleged murderer (inset)
Chantelle Chetcuti, and Justin Borg, her alleged murderer (inset)

A magistrate has heard an eyewitness account of the horrific stabbing in Zabbar which claimed the life of Chantelle Chetcuti from a passerby.

Chetcuti died of injuries she sustained after she was stabbed in the head, allegedly by her ex-partner Justin Borg, who stands accused of her homicide.

Chetcuti’s friend, Silvan Medina testified. He had been at the St. Patrick’s football club with Chetcuti, he said.

“It was a Sunday, two weeks ago. At around 5 or 6 pm myself and Chantelle had gone to the St. Patrick’s club. There was a certain Dillon and Chantelle said that if he was there then Justin would know [that she was there]. Sure enough Justin arrived shortly afterwards and tried to talk to her. But she didn’t want to,” continued the witness.

He had met Chantelle at the club at around 3pm and then later returned there around 5 or 6pm.

He recalled how Justin Borg had asked him whether he could speak to Chantelle and the witness had replied that he didn’t want to get in between the former couple.

He had seen Borg come in and then Chetcuti went outside after she and Medina finished their game of billiards; Borg followed her outside. Then someone came running in saying she had been stabbed, Medina recalled. “She had started ignoring him and moved around the billiard table, playing the game. He followed her around the table, asking her to speak with him. Then we sat down and she went outside. There was no shouting, he said. They were outside for maybe two minutes before the passer-by came in screaming.”

He hadn’t seen Borg, who was alone, grab anything. “She was on the ground outside with a knife in her head, shaking. I went to the police station straight away.”

Outside, Borg had disappeared, recalled the witness. “I went to the police station and was interrogated.”

A second witness, a police officer who had been on a night shift duty at the local police station on February 2 told the court that at around 8:20pm, Justin Borg had informed him that he had stabbed his girlfriend. “I called the control room and the RIU arrived soon after. He had blood on his shirt and hands. He looked like he was about to cry.”

He indicated the accused in the dock, explaining that Borg’s hand had been bleeding from a cut.

Passer-by finds body

The third witness, a passer-by, had been taking his children home to Zabbar when he saw the incident unfold in his rear-view mirror.

“As I passed the St Patricks football club, on the pavement I see a man and a woman… the man hitting her and the woman falling to the ground. I looked in the mirror and saw her falling to the ground and the man waving his hands. I thought he had punched her and I couldn’t just drive on. I told the kids to stay in the car as the woman had fallen over. The man crossed the road towards the church, got in his car and left.

“I saw the woman with a knife stuck in her head, her arm shaking… I ran into the club. I hadn’t grasped the severity of the incident until that moment.”

The blows he saw looked like roundhouse punches, he said, adding that before the blows, he hadn’t seen any signs of agitation.

He couldn’t make out the colour of the man’s vehicle, he said. “It was dark.”

“I found the woman on the floor. Her hair partially obscuring her face. The knife handle was sticking out of her temple. I saw her shaking, face down on the pavement. Her head on one of her hands. I took the children to their mother in a hurry and then returned and gave a statement to the police.”

Drugs found on the accused

Inspector Joanna Piscopo from Zabbar told magistrate Rachel Montebello that two small sachets of suspected drugs were found in the accused man’s possession after his arrest. There were several CCTV cameras covering the area, she confirmed to the court.

The case continues on 24 February.

Lawyers Franco Debono, Marion Camilleri and Francesca Zarb are defence counsel to Borg. Inspector Kurt Zahra is prosecuting.

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