Magistrate Court District ‘C’ Nevis

(CHARLESTOWN NEVIS)-The Magistrate Court in Charlestown, District C Nevis resumed its usual sitting on Tuesday, November 15, 2016 before Her Honor Yasmine Clarke.

The matter before the Court was that of Joseph Williams, a resident of Cherry Gardens. He was charged for breaking and entering and pled not guilty to both charges.

According to the Police Prosecutor, Eurita Percival, on Sunday, June 19, 2016 the defendant kicked off a door and entered the house of Ms. Sasha Hanley of Hamilton Estate. Hanley and Williams were  once a married couple, but divorced a little over one year ago.

The Prosecution’s first witness was Ms. Sasha Hanley. She told the Court that on June 19, 2016, the defendant called her on the phone and requested if he could have gotten the two children for the day. Hanley said she told Williams “no” because he had them Friday and Saturday and the Sunday was for her to prepare them for school. She pointed out that after that was explained to Hanley, she hung up the phone and Hanley called several times thereafter but she did not answer any of the calls.

She indicated that a few minutes later, she heard some loud “punging” so she went into her bedroom, looked through her window and saw the defendant. Hanley told the Cour,t that she gathered her children from in the living room and went back inside her bedroom. Hanley opined, that after the “punging” started getting louder, she took out her phone and called her boyfriend. Sasha said the accused eventually broke in the door, came inside, and held her daughters and they were in a bit of tug of war for them and while they were battling, Williams raised his hand but he did not hit her. She stated that Williams managed to get her younger daughter.

The witness said that her mother came out, closed the small gate and asked Mr. Williams what he was doing on her property since he knows he was not supposed to be there. Hanley sated, that her mother and Williams started exchanging words and Williams said, “All now she should still have been getting licks, she would be black and blue”. The Prosecutor asked Hanley if she gave Williams permission to break down her door and Hanley responded and said she did not give him any permission to enter my house and break down my door. The Prosecutor also asked Hanley, what she did when the accused broke in her door. Hanley said that she called the police and when they came, they were arguing back and forth.

The defendant represented himself and cross-examined the witness. Williams asked Hanley why the kids were with him Friday and Saturday. Hanley replied that they were with you because it was the weekend. Williams asked Hanley if he did not say to her that he will pick up the children Saturday night because I have to work on Sunday. Hanley responded and said, “No you did not tell me anything”. Hanley continued, “You had them Friday and Saturday so if you had want them for Sunday, you should have said it in advance so I could get them ready”.

In making her judgment, Her Honor told the defendant if he kicked down the door to gain entry, it was maliciously done. In addition to that, Her Honor told Williams that she did not believe that the issue was about the children, but they have unresolved issues from the marriage separation. She told Williams, that his behaviour was uncalled for and if they are divorced, he needs to get over it and move on with his life. The Magistrate also warned the accused about fixing back the door. She stated, “You are going to fix back the door, do not let it reach before the court as a civil matter”. Her Honor told the defendant that if any such action is repeated, she will send him to prison.

He was given a fine of $800.00 dollars to be paid in three months. If he fails to comply, Williams will serve one month in prison.



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