A presentencing report has been ordered on a father who pleaded guilty to three offences including assault.
Earl Thomas, of McClean’s Gap Britton’s Hill, St Michael admitted to the Chief Magistrate that he committed the offence against his daughters, 16 and 13, on December 31 last year.
The 43-year-old self-employed man also admitted to having a weapon, namely a cutlass, along McClean’s Gap, a public place.
The incident occurred when the three went to watch fireworks on the beach.
Thomas, told the District ‘A’ Magistrates’ Court that he “made a mistake” but was simply trying to discipline the two girls that day because they had separated from him.
He said he gave the 13-year-old a “slap” on the shoulder. “Before I know it the [older girl] start to scuffle. I told them to wait for me. I saw the amount of people on the beach and it had me scared looking for them.”
He was asked the reason for having the cutlass in his possession. Thomas explained that the weapon was concealed and it was to protect his family as he had been walking with several children. “I wanted it just in case . . . I made a mistake, I am very sorry sir,” he said.
The mother of the children who was in court explained that it was not the first time that “something like that happened.” She claimed that Thomas has a “problem with alcohol” and makes “noise”.
She said: “I just want him to keep away for me. I can’t stop the children from talking to him.”
But Thomas said the statements were not all true.
“The children just don’t like to listen. Is all girls and I am a man when I talk to them it does be problems,” he said.
Expressing concern about the “dysfunctional family relationship” and the need for counseling Chief Magistrate Weekes referred Thomas to a probation officer who was present in court.
He will make his next appearance on April 4 when it is expected that the report will be ready.
In the meantime Thomas is on $2 500 bail which he secured with one surety, pending sentencing.