A prosecutor was today chided by a magistrate for suggesting that the “court should do its upmost best” to remand an accused.
Police constable Kevin Forde asked Magistrate Douglas Frederick to use his power to remand 47-year-old Sharon Yvette Harris of Bartlett Tenantry, Sargeant Village, Christ Church, after she appeared in the District ‘A’ Magistrates’ Court today on a theft charge.
Harris, who is known to the courts, had pleaded not guilty to stealing one purse valued $150 and $250 in cash belonging to Carol Taylor on December 17, 2018.
In objecting to bail, Forde argued that Harris had the propensity to reoffend based on her antecedents.
He said while the last conviction recorded against her was in 2009, “it did not rule out the fact she had re-offended since then,” pointing out that she was still before the court on a 2011 matter.
Forde said the accused was also currently on bail.
“The evidence shows that she has the propensity to re-offend and I would hope that the court does it upmost best to remand the accused,” he added.
However, the magistrate did not take kindly to that suggestion.
“The prosecution should not object in a manner like that. I don’t appreciate that language and it should not be used in an objection to bail,” Frederick told him.
Queen’s Counsel Andrew Pilgrim in his bail application told the court that his client had been given station bail for the offence before the court. He said this showed there was no doubt by police that his client would turn up for court.
Pilgrim also took issue with prosecutor’s claim that Harris’ antecedents showed she had a propensity to reoffend.
“Her last conviction dates back to 2009 and her last charge was in 2011, which means nothing has happened in the last eight years.
“How can you say she has a propensity to re-offend when she hasn’t for the past ten years?” Pilgrim questioned.
“In ten years you can have your record expunged, so what is the basis of this propensity? Was it in her childhood?”
Pilgrim further argued there was no reason to remand his client as she had only been charged with stealing $400.
After hearing both arguments, the magistrate said he saw no reason to remand Harris. He then granted her bail in the sum of $2500 and ordered her to reappear in court on June 5, 2019.