Safiya Moore, defense attorney for convicted killer Raffique Vincent Murray on Friday recommended a sentence in the range of five to ten years for her client’s crime.
In May 2020 Murray pleaded not guilty to murdering David Harewood on October 3, 2016 but admitted to the lesser count of manslaughter.
On his arrest in 2016 he told police he killed Harewood because, “I did not like how he was talking to me and touching me.”
Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions Alliston Seale said the then 16-year-old Murray, of Sinckler Road, Haggatt Hall, St Michael, made the comment to lawmen who were investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of the 39-year old man.
Harewood’s lifeless body was discovered lying in a pool of blood along the road at the junction of George Street and Belmont Road, St Michael on October 3, 2016.
At a virtual sitting of the No. 2 Supreme Court this morning the young convict’s lawyer continued her mitigation on his behalf. She had already made submissions at a previous sitting.
Moore, addressing Justice Randall Worrell, made reference to a decision by the Court of Appeal – in the matter of Elliston Greaves vs The Queen – which gave new guidelines on sentencing in manslaughter matters.
Moore stated that Murray fell “squarely” into category four of the decision – which states that for the offences of manslaughter where there are strong mitigating circumstances, for example an absence of premeditation; no use of a firearm or other offensive weapon; or the presence of serious provocative words or other actions, the starting point should be five to ten years.
Her client’s case, she argued, “falls most in line” with that category and all of those characteristics existed in his case.
“There is an absence of premeditation in the matter; there is no use of a firearm, a rock was used . . . but it is not an offensive weapon in the sense of a knife or bladed instrument or firearm and we acknowledged previously that there was some serious provocation here. At the point in time Murray was [a teen] and this was a much older gentleman. My submissions are this is a matter that can fall within that five to ten range,” Moore said.
The Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions Seale concurred with Moore’s submission adding that this case “falls at the bottom tier of the directions for manslaughter in Elliston Greaves’ decision.”
Murray, who has spent 1,806 days on remand at Dodds, will reappear before Justice Worrell on Monday, September 27 when it is expected that he will be sentenced.