Police files have to be brought before the magistrates’ courts more speedily.
Magistrate Douglas Frederick issued the stern warning, as he dismissed a case, which had been in the court system for three years. The file was still not available today.
Three years ago, he was accused of robbing Hugo Alleyne of a $4 000 chain and a $1 500 pendant. But today, Michael Hollingsworth got a third anniversary present as he walked out of the District ‘A’ Magistrates’ Court free of any charge, after Magistrate Frederick dismissed his case.
Hollingsworth is a 43-year-old security guard of Godding Road, Station Hill, St. Michael.
When the case came up in the District ‘A’ Magistrates’ Court No. 1 today, prosecutor, acting Station Sergeant Neville Watson, said he was not in possession of a file. He then introduced the investigator who said the file had been completed even though it was not present.
“Did you do everything you were supposed to do on it?” asked the magistrate.
“Since 2012,” the officer replied.
Asked where the file was, the policeman said he expected it would be available soon but was still “coming through the channels”.
“And it is taking so long to get here? These channels (are) taking too long,” Magistrate Frederick replied.
“The accused has no lawyer,” the magistrate said, “he has no-one to speak for him. He has a life too. If you submitted everything since 2012, then the file should be here. It takes three years to get here?”
“If he was found guilty, what could I do with him? By then, the man might have matured, changed his life . . . . We have to deal with these matters as soon as possible,’ he said.