Year in Review: Court updates on murder cases

2011 trials include two retrials

In seven incidents regarded by
police as murder in 2010, arrests were made in six and defendants are before
the courts at various stages of proceedings.

Only in the fatal shooting of
security guard COURTNEY SPENCE in George Town on 28 January has there been no arrest.
The matter is still under investigation.

Cayman’s next fatality was JEREMIAH
BARNES, four, who was shot in West Bay on the evening of 15 February, when he
was with his brother and mother and his father, Andy Barnes. Devon Anglin has
been charged with murdering Jeremiah. Trial is set for 14 March.

MARCOS DURAN, 29, was killed in
West Bay on 11 March. A 16-year-old male was charged with murder; he has been
before the Grand Court since July but the trial has not yet taken place. The
teen is not being named because of his age. In September, Raziel Jeffers, 27,
was also charged with Mr. Duran’s murder. Craig Victor Johnson, 29, has been
charged with being an accessory after the fact.

Later in March, ALRICK RICARDO
PEDDIE, 25, was killed, also in West Bay. José Guadelupe Sanchez, Roger Deward
Bush and a male later said to be a juvenile were charged. Their trial has been
set for 14 June.

The next night, 25 March, DAMION
OMAR MING, 29, was killed, also in West Bay. Raziel Jeffers was charged and
committed to Grand Court, but no trial date has been set. Jeffers is also
charged with the murder of Marcus Ebanks in July 2009; that trial is set for 14
March. 

TYRONE BURRELL, 20, of West Bay,
was killed in September. Leonard Antonio Ebanks, 39, was charged in October and
a preliminary inquiry was held on 13 December. Ebanks was committed to Grand
Court, where he will appear on 12 January.

On 1 October, JACK KENNEDY FORBES,
49, was killed in Bodden Town. Two men have been charged with his murder and
their preliminary inquiry is scheduled for 5 January. If the Summary Court
finds sufficient evidence to put them on trial, they will appear in Grand Court
on 12 January.

Two men who stood trial for murder
in 2009 came back to Grand Court this year for retrial. The new trials are
expected to take place in 2011.

Josue Carillo Perez was found not
guilty of murdering Martin Gareau after he chose trial by judge alone. The
Crown appealed the verdict and in March the Cayman Islands Court of Appeal
agreed that the judge had misdirected himself on the standard of proof. The new
trial has been set for 23 May and is expected to last four to five weeks.

William Martinez-McLaughlin was
found guilty of murdering Brian Rankine-Carter. In August, the Court of Appeal
allowed the appeal filed by his attorneys on the basis that the judge’s instructions
to the jury were faulty. Informal records kept by the Caymanian Compass do not
indicate a retrial date.

The Court of Appeal dismissed
appeals against two other murder convictions this year. The three-judge panel,
led by Sir John Chadwick, upheld the conviction of Randy Martin, whom Justice
Charles Quin found guilty of murdering Sabrina Schirn near the East End prison
farm in March 2009.

Cayman’s high court also dismissed
appeals by Larry Ricketts and Kirkland Henry, whom Chief Justice Anthony
Smellie found guilty of murdering Estella Scott-Roberts in October 2008.

Another major trial
in 2010 was that of Osbourne Wilfred Douglas, Patrick Elbert McField and Brandon
Leslie Ebanks for the murder of Omar Barton Samuels in July 2008. A jury of
eight women and four men returned guilty verdicts against all three in
September. It has been confirmed that the men have filed appeals and the
expectation is that Court of Appeal will hear the matter in its Spring 2011 session

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