Jezelle Philip-Fournillier

Killed: Jezelle Philip-Fournillier 

A 43-year-old man has been charged with the murder of preschool principal Jezelle Fournillier.

He is expected to appear before a Port of Spain magistrate this morning.

Officials from the Homicide Bureau of Investigations received instructions from Director of Public Prosecutions Roger Gaspard SC yesterday to charge the suspect.

Police told the Express that while on paper the investigation may have appeared to be “open and shut”, protocols and procedures still needed to be followed, inclusive of taking statements from witnesses, and securing all relevant footage from the scene to the Besson Street Police Station, where the suspect walked to and surrendered following the killing.

This process took just over a week, police said. Police said about 7.20 a.m. on January 6, Fournillier, 48, of East Port of Spain, had just opened the ABC Babies Preschool along George Street, Port of Spain, and was inside with at least five children who had been dropped off earlier by their parents when she was approached by the 43-year-old man who was known to her. The man drew a knife from his pocket and began stabbing her repeatedly about the body in front of the children.

Police said after stabbing the woman the suspect walked out the building and headed to the Besson Street station, where he presented officers with the knife, telling them what he had done.

He had an injury to his left arm, apparently sustained during the attack.

He was taken for medical treatment at the Port of Spain General Hospital, where he once again confessed to officers and asked them to “just charge” him.

Fournillier was laid to rest yesterday following a funeral service at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Port of Spain.