On Tuesday morning, May 2nd, a crime scene re-enactment took place at Brabant Street, Port Louis. The exercise was organised by investigators from the Criminal Investigation Division (CID) of the Metropolitan Police of the Southern Division with the participation of Christopher Jonathan Magdeleine, a 36-year-old homeless man. The latter confessed after his arrest on Thursday 27 April to being the murderer of Sri Balkrishna Luchmaya, who was in his shop on the afternoon of Tuesday 25 April.
It was shortly after 11am that Christopher Magdeleine arrived on foot at Brabant Street, Port Louis under heavy police escort from the CID and the Divisional Supporting Unit (DSU) of the Southern Division. The suspect, wearing a helmet and bullet-proof waistcoat, got out of the police vehicle on Maupin Street, opposite the former La Butte bazaar, to retrace his route on Tuesday 25 April shortly before 2pm.
The re-enactment was led by Chief Inspector Chandrana Ragavoodoo of the Port Louis/South CID, under the supervision of Superintendent of Police Aniff Thug, who is in charge of the division’s CID. During the exercise, the various places where the suspect had stopped were filmed and photographed respectively by Constable Mootoosamy. The police sketch artist, Rungbahadoor was also present.
The first session of the re-enactment was devoted to video recording and the second to photography. This exercise lasted more than an hour. Christopher Magdeleine indicated to the CID investigators a place under a tree at the corner of Brabant and Condé Streets where he was standing to observe the actions of the victim in his haberdashery shop some twenty metres away. He then went to Caudan Street where there was a vacant lot next to the victim’s house.
After assaulting the victim to rob her of Rs 800 and three rings, two of which were gold, Christopher Magdeleine retraced his route on Caudan Street to reach the highway near the Caudan roundabout to dispose of an envelope containing business cards under a bridge which he had stolen from the victim. He said he had only stolen a gold ring. He then went to Rue St Joseph, Port Louis where he intended to sell the ring in a jewellery shop. The shop was closed.
The arrest of Christopher Magdeleine was made at around 4.30pm on Thursday 27 April near the Kwan Tee Pagoda. This was after Safe City footage showed him clearing this exhibit. After his arrest he soon confessed. He was living in an abandoned house in La Pointe, Pointe aux Sables. He was recognised by the way he walked. The clothes and cap he was wearing on the day he assaulted the nonagenarian were seized from a bag in his possession.
Sri Balkrishna Luchmaya, who was due to celebrate his 91st birthday on Sunday, June 4, died of asphyxiation due to neck compression. This was revealed in the autopsy conducted by Dr Sudesh Kumar Gungadin, head of the police forensic department.