A 54-year-old man, who has been waging a long battle with drugs, has been sentenced to 18 months in prison for theft.
Patrick Bruce DeSilva, of no fixed place of abode, pleaded guilty before Magistrate Douglas Frederick to five charges, all of which were committed this month.
Between December 3 and 4 he stole five bottles of alcohol worth $535.40, a bottle of rum punch worth $120 and a cordless drill machine belonging to Benjamin Read.
He stole from Read again between December 17 and 20, but this time he took three bottles of alcohol worth $235.18, a bottle of rum punch worth $120, a cooler worth $200 and a $100 spanner tool set.
Read, who is the owner of a catamaran that is moored off the Boatyard on Bay Street, St Michael, secured the vessel on each occasion but on his return discovered items missing.
DeSilva apparently gained entry by jumping off another vessel onto the catamaran, prying open the rear glass door, removing the drinks and other items before leaving as he came.
None of the property was recovered when he was arrested.
However, his thieving spree did not end there. DeSilva admitted to stealing two gowns worth $26, a $5 bib, a $22 shirt, a $6 table cloth, a $5 sash, a $3 dust pan, a $5 searchlight, a $24 pair of slippers, a pair of emblems worth $2, cloth worth $3 and $1.50 in money belonging to Frederick George, between December 23 and 24, as well as a Barbados driver’s licence belonging to Glen King around the same time.
From the dock of the District ‘A’ Magistrates’ Court DeSilva explained that he was a product of a well off family but began using alcohol, marijuana and eventually cocaine when he tried to fit in with the “in crowd” – a group of guys who were older than him.
“It escalated from there . . . It has ruined my life and my relationship with my daughter,” DeSilva said, while revealing that he has 11 O’level certificates, as well as academic qualifications in marketing and management.
He also revealed that he appeared before Frederick back in 2010 and was sent to Verdun House for treatment, which he said was the “best thing a magistrate had ever done”.
However, after making use of the opportunity and being clean for a year and half, he had a relapse.
DeSilva also told the magistrate that while at HMP Dodds he had tutored inmates there for CXC subjects and had a 100 per cent pass rate.
However, he said he had been under a lot of pressure since his release for prison earlier this year.
After securing a job, DeSilva said a negative comment about his drug use “played with my head”.
“I am not making any excuses . . . but prison is not helping me [although] I am not expecting a slap on the wrist,” he said.
In response, Frederick told DeSilva that he was an intelligence man, but lacked confidence in himself.
“You grew up with a golden spoon but you let it turn to brass . . . . You could have gone further. [However], you have made a good contribution to the prison. You have a way with words, you motivate [the prisoners], but you are not motivating yourself,” the magistrate said before sending him off to prison.
“I want to see you change your life around, but more importantly to try to reform yourself,” Frederick added.