The St Michael mother and her boyfriend accused of unlawfully killing six-year-old Jahan King were sent back to Dodds prison today on extended remand until June 20.
Dwayne Alistair Marshall, an unemployed 33-year-old man from Belfield, Jackson, and Lasonta Katrina Gill, 26, of the same address, reappeared in the District ‘A’ Magistrates’ Court this morning.
Despite pleas from their attorney Samuel Legay, Magistrate Kristie Cuffy-Sargeant denied his bail application.
In his submissions, Legay referred to a magistrate in another jurisdiction who sat in a similar trial where there had been public outcry but had declared that she would not be swayed by emotion.
“We have to look at the charge before the court. This is a charge that the court can grant bail for,” the lawyer argued. He again pointed out that Gill, the child’s mother, “has no previous convictions” and was “in a trusted position as a cashier for ten years”.
In the case of Marshall, Legay reiterated that he had attended court faithfully in his previous matters.
“My clients are deserving of bail,” Legay insisted, adding that they had been on remand for 28 days and, at this point “there is no indication from the prosecution as to when they intend to even start, or if investigations have been completed”.
The defence attorney went on: “We know that for next two or three years, they will come to court and say the file is not ready.”
“The evidence is purely circumstantial,” he added.
“Since June 2015 when the young child passed away, these two persons have never left the island” and have been to the police station several times, he told the court.
“They were always present and available to police for questioning. There is no reason to suggest they are any flight risk, or that they will interfere with witnesses.”
Legay asked that “these two people be admitted to bail with whatever conditions the court sees fit . . . and I do not think I need to go to the High Court when it is in the bosom of the magistrate to do so.”
Responding, Sergeant Neville Reid submitted, “the prosecution’s position remains the same”.
Additionally, the magistrate court’s decision Legay referred to was “neither binding nor persuasive on this court”, the prosecutor contended.
Reid added that persons were convicted regularly on circumstantial evidence and, further, the defence must show a change of circumstances and he did not think “that was demonstrated today”.