Seven young men who appeared today before Magistrate Kristie Cuffy-Sargeant on a string of robbery charges, were all remanded in custody.
The lone juvenile in the group, a 15-year-old student from Christ Church, was remanded to the Government Industrial School until Wednesday, September 16, when he will appear at the Juvenile Court. The other accused were sent to HMP Dodds.
The minor’s name cannot be published for legal reasons. The remaining accused are Lamar Ricardo Johnson, 16, of Medford Land, Dayrells Road, Christ Church; Ahmal Gregory Elias, 17, of Ventnor Gardens, Christ Church; Joshua Jack, 18, of Jessamy Avenue, Bayville, St Michael; Shaquille O’Brian Roach, 19, of St Matthias, Christ Church; Kyle Chad Rasheem Archer, 21, of Bayview Avenue, Bayville, St Michael and Jamar Darnelle Mottley, 27, of Dayrells Road, Christ Church.
Some of the matters which were read to the accused in the District ‘A’ Magistrates Court are indictable and will have to be tried in the high court while the others are summary matters and can be tried at the Magistrates’ Court.
Johnson and Mottley are jointly charged with robbing Paul Thorpe of a $1,800 cell phone and $32, along with six others who were allegedly robbed of phones, cash and jewellery. The juvenile is also facing that one indictable count.
Mottley and Johnson are further charged with robbing Bo Bristov of a $600 ring on July 15, to which they pleaded not guilty.
Accused Johnson, Elias and Roach are facing a charge of robbing Nicholas Holder of a $300 cell phone on August 8. They denied committing the offence.
Mottley, Archer and Jack are also accused of robbing Laure Garancher on September 1 of a bag, wallet, cash and jewellery. They were not required to plead.
Archer alone is charged with robbing Lisa Maddry of a handbag and its contents to the tune of $4,197.60 on September 8. That matter is also indictable and not requiring him to plead.
Roach pleaded guilty to the final charge of having marijuana in his possession on September 12. He will be sentenced later.
The prosecutor objected to bail for the accused men. Apart from one charge, he noted all the others were for robbery and they were not only serious in name but involved “person to person confrontation between parties” that could have resulted “in injury to one party or another”.
Station Sergeant Irvin Kellman also contended that the repetition of these offences showed a proclivity to commit these types of crime. He argued that if given bail, the accused would very likely “resort to this type of behaviour” and return either before this same court or another one.
In her submissions on behalf of Jack, attorney-at-law Angella Mitchell-Gittens took issue with the prosecutor’s “group objections”. She appealed to the court to look at each accused individually instead of them all being “lumped together”.
“All offences are serious,” she admitted, but Jack’s “one count of robbery” was not beyond what others are granted bail for “as a matter of course in these courts”.
Mitchell-Gittens said her client had no previous convictions, was not on bail and “this is the very first charge sheet he has had in his life, Ma’am”. She stressed that the court ought not to be moved by the fears of a prosecutor “but by evidence” and the commission of the offence was yet to be determined.
Attorney for accused Mottley, Damien Sands, also responded to the prosecutor’s submissions. He said Mottley had one antecedent which occurred eight years ago, which clearly showed that he had been making great effort to “keep out of trouble” since then.
“When you consider his antecedents, there is no long criminal history nor one of violence or dishonesty,” Sands pointed out.
He also said the first-time father was expecting twins in January, resides with his girlfriend and father and has actively sought employment since being laid-off in March. The lawyer deemed it “highly unlikely” that his client would jeopardize seeing the birth of his children by flouting any bail conditions which might be placed on him.
Magistrate Cuffy-Sargeant then remanded the men until October 2.
However, thereafter, accused Archer asked to address the court so he could “leh you know what going on with me”. He then asked to be remanded to the Psychiatric Hospital since he is known to them and so he could continue getting his medication. He explained that he suffered with ADHD and is schizophrenic.
The accused also said his medication is not properly administered when he is in prison.
Responding, the prosecutor said he could see no reason for Archer to receive any different treatment from the others, since HMP Dodds has the facilities to remand a prisoner to the Psychiatric Hospital if it determined that need.
“Of all the accused . . . , he is the one with previous convictions,” Kellman said, “and I would object to his bail more so than the others”.
A few of the robberies reportedly occurred on the Richie Haynes Board Walk.