By: Gavincia Clarke
(CHARLESTOWN, NEVIS)- His Lordship Justice John Benjamin, QC, on Thursday, April 18, 2013 sentenced a Rawlins Village resident at the Charlestown High Court after the accused changed his not guilty plea to guilty.
The accused was charged with larceny and attempted rape. The offenses are said to have been committed on May 26, 2012 at Stoney Grove.
Nevispages understands that the virtual complainant, (VC), and the mother of the VC had already taken the witness stand and gave evidence against the defendant before the court made an adjournment for lunch. Upon resumption after lunch, counsel for the accused made an application to the court for the charge of attempted rape to be changed to attempted unlawful carnal knowledge; and the charge of larceny be changed to house breaking. The changes were agreed to by the Prosecution and as a result the judge granted the amendments.
The indictments were then read to the accused. He then changed his plea to guilty on both counts.
The accused was then sentenced to 3 years imprisonment with Hard Labour on both charges; his charges however will run concurrently. At the time of the incident the VC was 13 years old.
If the indictments were not agreed to and the matters had gone to full trial, then the accused could have faced up to life imprisonment for rape.
Also in Court on Thursday a 12 member jury returned with unanimous verdicts of not guilty for two persons who were charged with sexual offenses.
During the trial a no case submission was presented by Attorney for one of the accused, Chesley Hamilton and as a result the charges of rape and aiding and abetting were dismissed. This left the charge of indecent assault to be deliberated by the jurors.
The jurors then returned with a not guilty verdict on those charges.
Due to the nature of the crime and the sensitivity of issues surrounding such matters, this media house is not allowed to report on the details of the cases.