Accused Rico Renaldo Edwards says he could not remember touching an 11-year-old boy’s genitals when he was told of the situation on May 24, 2015.
Edwards was speaking as he gave his version of what allegedly occurred that day, in an unsworn statement from the dock of the No. 5 Supreme Court.
Edwards, of Sargeant’s Park, Foul Bay, St Philip is on trial before Madam Justice Pamela Beckles and a jury charged with indecently assaulting the minor during a Cub Scout camp at a St Philip primary school.
The man who is in his later 20s told the court that he had been contacted on May 22, 2015 to assist at the camp as medical personnel. On arrival he was introduced to the camp’s director, given his duties and taken to the room where he was to conduct those duties.
Edwards said on Saturday the camp went on a tour and then returned to the school.
“Whilst back at the school I recognised that the leaders were busy so any little things I assist them with, being that myself I was a member of the Cub Scouts at the said school. I would give them little insights into little things I would have done . . . little things that a scout should know.
“The same night myself and Mr [Paul] Persaud [camp leader] we were talking whilst walking . . . and then we ended up in the same classroom where the boys were sleeping. He sat down . . . We were tired with the day’s activity. I sat down in the doorway and I recognise that he was talking to the boys, so I just laid back and fell off to sleep,” he recalled.
Later on in the night, Edwards said he woke up to a sound and noticed that the complainant was “over” another scout.
“His hand was like over the boy and his foot was over him, so I took him by his shoulder and also by his pants and I pulled him back over, so that there would be space between them and then I went back off to sleep.”
He added, “After that I cannot remember anything else that happened other than when I was awoken and taken downstairs. Before I was taken downstairs they said there [was] a situation downstairs so I thought automatically it was a medical situation because the majority of the boys were asthmatics.
“I rush down the stairs and ask ‘what happen, what happen is it a medical problem?’ I saw ( the complainant) so I was like ‘what happen (child’s name)? You okay’. . . cause I know (the complainant) was one of the asthmatics.
“They asked him . . . what happened and he pointed at me and said that ‘he was playing with my testicles’. So then I was like shocked. I was like ‘but I can’t remember any of this happening’. I was asked to go and sit down . . . and they told me police has been called [and] on their way. I said no problem.”
Following his unsworn statement Edwards’ attorney Kevin Miller closed the case for the defence. No witnesses were called to give evidence on the accused’s behalf.
The matter was then adjourned until Monday, May 16 when Principal Crown Counsel Krystal Delaney who is prosecuting the case and Miller will make their closing addresses to the jury.
Justice Beckles says she expects to give her summation of the case on Tuesday before handing it over to the jury for deliberations and verdict.