The family of Stephen Molly Small, the fish vendor who died on September 7 after being stabbed, have called for justice for their loved one.
“I want justice for my brother! We want justice for my brother!” was the cry of Sylvia Small moments after the man and woman accused of his death were escorted across the precincts of the District ‘A’ Magistrate’s Court on their way to HMP Dodds where they have been remanded.
The duo, Dave Fedel Aristide James, 24, and Verena Isilma Vasilka Cuffy, 34, both of Wavell Gardens, Black Rock, St Michael appeared before Magistrate Kristie Cuffy-Sargeant charged with the capital offence.
The accused, who are represented by attorneys Michael Lashley, QC, Jamila Lorde and Njozi Nzekwue, were not required to plead to the indictable offence after it was read.
Both accused are also facing additional charges.
James, a labourer, pleaded not guilty to driving a vehicle along St Matthias Road, Christ Church, about 11:30 a.m. on September 1, when he allegedly had no drivers licence and no insurance as well as driving without due care and attention.
Cuffy also entered not guilty pleas to the September 8 charges of possession of cannabis and cultivation of the plants.
Lashley, their lead attorney, put in an early application for the prosecution to serve his team with pretrial disclosure of witness statements “as soon as possible” and also disclosed that he would write to the Commissioner of Police in connection with all necessary documents and statements pertaining to the case.
The defence attorney also said that he was “a little taken back” with the manner in which “a section of the press [reported the case].
“I read facts to my mind that would only serve to prejudice my clients’ right to a fair trial.
“I hope certain sections of the media will desist . . . because . . . it is a capital offence and of course in a small society, you have to be [mindful] to the fact that there are potential jurors out there who can be influenced by whatever is said in the media,” Lashley said adding that the facts revealed today in “a particular paper” which he did not identify “are entirely wrong. Entirely wrong and I hope that they desist, ma’am. I have no issues with the press . . . . but I believe that they should respect [the constitutional process]”.
The accused were then given a October 11 date to return before the No. 2 District ‘A’ Magistrate’s Court.
And as they made their way across the courtyard escorted by prison officers, sobs could be heard coming from under the arch near the entrance of the premises.
It came from Molly’s siblings, Sylvia and Joyce Small as well as two of his work colleagues who had come to witness the proceedings.
“We need justice . . . . I need justice for my brother . . . . My brother didn’t deserve this. My brother don’t deserve that. My brother was too sweet. My brother was kind, loving . . . and very understanding,” Sylvia Small said to the media.
“I need the public to understand, I need people to understand, we need justice for my brother,” she added.