Baggio Kristidi Decourcey Daniel is guilty of murder but has not received an automatic appointment to the hangman’s noose.
That’s because Daniel’s trial was the first capital case since the island’s mandatory death penalty was abolished.
Now a pre-sentencing report has been ordered into Daniel’s life and he will return to the High Court on Monday, December 2, when that report is expected and attorneys for both the prosecution and defence will make submissions on his sentencing.
When the 12-member jury left to deliberate just before 1 p.m. today after Madam Justice Jacqueline Cornelius delivered the summation they returned around 2:45 p.m. when the madam foreman told the No. 5 Supreme Court that they had yet to reach a unanimous verdict.
After getting the necessary directions from Justice Cornelius, the jury left again around 2:50 p.m. and returned at 3: 42 p.m.
Madam foreman then revealed that they had reached a unanimous verdict and declared the 27-year-old Daniel of Block 1A Factory Avenue, Wildey, St Michael guilty of murdering Alex Romel Samuels, formerly of Jackson, St Michael, on February 1, 2012.
It was a trial that took almost a month to complete having started on September 23. Some 20 witnesses gave evidence in the case in which Principal Crown Counsel Krystal Delaney and Crown Counsel Neville Watson were the prosecutors and attorney-at-law Marlon Gordon represented the now convicted murderer.
Evidence from the Crown witnesses at the start of the trial revealed that a minibus on which the deadly incident occurred was travelling along the Pine/Wildey route when Samuels boarded in an area near the Parkinson School. The vehicle continued along the route doing pick-ups and drop-offs until Daniel also boarded at some point.
The conductor was sitting in the front of the vehicle and on reaching the Parkinson junction she recalled hearing a “loud explosion” . . . and she panicked.
“I hear screaming and see everybody trying to get away to hide for cover. I saw the guy that we picked up from by Parkinson School clutching his chest. I saw the accused with what seem to be a firearm in his hand . . . people panicking sent me into a panic and the deceased was trying to get down between the seats,” the conductor said.
The driver of the public service vehicle also told the court, “When I get by CBC side I just hear like something went off in the van like . . . a cap gun. As I turn left by Parkinson people starting jumping through the window and rushing through the door. I did not even come to a complete stop yet. I then pull up the handbrake and when I turn . . . I was in complete shock,” he said.