No bail for Daniel
Matthew Ricardo Daniel, 40, of Licorish Village, My Lords Hill, St Michael reappeared in the District ‘A’ Traffic Court earlier today. He was remanded on charges of furious driving, dangerous driving, driving without due care and attention and driving without reasonable consideration for other road users.
This time, he went before acting Magistrate Elwood Watts before whom the prosecution renewed their objections to bail.
Previously those objections were that the allegations were serious, the fact that Daniel had antecedents and that if convicted, he could face up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine on the driving furious offence.
Further, that one of the aggravating circumstances as it relates to these allegations is that school children were traveling in the vehicle and a number of these persons were seriously injured. One child lost her arm below the elbow after the incident.
The prosecutor also submitted that it was a matter of public interest, tensions were very high, parents were angry and investigations needed to be completed.
Today, Daniel’s attorney Angella Mitchell-Gittens contended that there was no reason to continue holding Daniel “who has been in custody almost two months”.
She said that many accused with more serious charges where there is a loss of life “are not in danger of incarceration” since the usual penalty for a conviction for death by dangerous driving was a suspended sentence and a fine.
Mitchell-Gittens questioned whether Daniels would be required to continue on remand until whenever the prosecution withdraws its objections to bail.
She added that the matter was not likely to get off the ground “in any hurry” and she therefore could not see the point of “this pre-trial remand”. She submitted that should the accused be convicted, only then would “incarceration become a live issue”.
Today’s denial of bail had to do with the fact that the sitting Traffic Court Magistrate, Graveney Bannister, had set down August 14 as the date on which pre-trial disclosure should be handed over to the defence attorney by the prosecution.
Watts therefore felt it best to see what would happen on that date as opposed to granting Daniel bail today. He reminded the prosecutor that disclosure ought to be ready for that upcoming date, when Daniel returns