Two St Joseph men accused of animal cruelty in connection with a viral video in which a monkey was burned alive, pleaded not guilty to the charge when they appeared in court today.
The men, 36-year-old Matthew Omar Downes, of Pasture Land, Lammings and 30-year-old Rico Jamar Maynard, of Airy Hill are charged with wanton, cruel abuse, torture and causing unnecessary suffering to a monkey between April 3 and 20 in contravention of Section 3 Subsection (1) clause (a) of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, Chapter 144A.
The accused pleaded not guilty to the charge and were granted $8,000 bail each by Magistrate Alison Burke this morning.
Magistrate Burke also ordered the accused not to have any animal under their control until the case is completed.
As part of their bail, Downes, who is represented by attorney-at-law Angella Mitchell-Gittens and Maynard represented by Kyle Walkes, are also now on daily court-imposed 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew.
They will next appear in the District ‘F’ Magistrates’ Court on October 9, when their case will continue. The prosecutor is Sergeant Theodore McClean.
According to police the men were arrested and charged after the WhatsApp video was investigated. It showed the green monkey, caught in a metal cage, doused with a substance and set on fire.