A walk against domestic violence will be in memory of Trinidadian Kiara Alleyne who was murdered at her Florida apartment last month. It will take place in Point Fortin.
Sheldon Alleyne, her father, said this will be the first on a series domestic violence awareness and sensitisation initiatives he has planned in the hope that other women will not suffer the same fate as his daughter.
Alleyne said he saw no signs that his daughter was being abused.
“They were good. They had a good relationship, just the typical problems like any other couple,” he said.
Kiara’s boyfriend DeAngelo LeAndrew Shelton Clark, 30, has been charged with second-degree murder. Kiara was stabbed to death at her apartment in Ocala, Florida, on September 11.
Alleyne, who lives abroad, came to T&T to attend his daughter’s funeral. She was laid to rest following a funeral service in her hometown of Point Fortin last week.
Recalling the fateful day, Alleyne said sometime after 1 am he received a call from his daughter’s phone. He said the suspect claimed his daughter was trying to kill him, but he heard Kiara in the background saying that he had a knife.
“There was a scuffle and the phone fell,” he said.
Alleyne said what he saw next will forever haunt him.
“She was holding her throat. Blood was pouring everywhere. I saw her take her last breath,” he recalled.
Alleyne said his daughter, a medical attendant, held two jobs to make ends meet. He described her as a strong, independent woman.
“My daughter was 110 pounds but she will not sit there and let anyone push her over.”
He said he helped her with her rent, bought her car and helped with the baby.
“I took care of my daughter and she took care of herself,” he said.
Alleyne believes Kiara had planned to leave the suspect as all her belongings were found packed up in bags in the apartment and in her car.
Kiara, who migrated to the United States about four years ago, was due to travel to New York to sign a modelling contract on October 16.
Alleyne travelled to Trinidad with Kiara’s one-year-old daughter who met her maternal grandmother and other relatives for the first time. He has filed for custody of his granddaughter.
Appealing to women in abusive or possessive relationships to speak out, seek help and/or get out, he said: “Call someone, call a family member, talk to someone. I had no clue that it would ever end up like this.”
Alleyne said Kiara’s friend, Imani Knights, came up with the idea for the walk on Friday. He is appealing for public support for the event in honour of his daughter and other victims of domestic violence. So far, about 200 people have expressed interest.
Participants are asked to wear something purple or white and gather at the Victor Chin Kit Park at 3.30 pm for the walk through the Borough. Marches are planned for Florida and other parts of the United States and a foundation will also be set up in memory of Kiara.
According to a United Nations report, an estimated 35 per cent of women worldwide have experienced either physical or sexual intimate partner violence, or sexual violence by a non-partner (not including sexual harassment) at some point in their lives.