Three men accused of murdering Alrick Ricardo Peddie last year were found not guilty by Justice Karl Harrison, who delivered his verdict Monday.
Robert Aaron Crawford, 18, Jose Guadalupe Sanchez, 24, and Roger Deward Bush, 36, were charged after Mr. Peddie died of gunshot wounds he received on the afternoon of 24 March. The shooting occurred in a yard on Willie Farrington Drive, West Bay. The victim was 25.
Bush and Sanchez walked free from the court house following Monday’s verdict. Crawford was returned to custody in an unrelated matter. He was expected to be released later on in the day.
The Crown relied on the principle of joint enterprise. Director of Public Prosecutions Cheryll Richards accepted that the case stood on the correctness of the identification of the defendants as the people who drove into the yard before Mr. Peddie was shot. There is no legal requirement for the Crown to prove motive and no evidence was put forward to establish a reason for the killing.
The defendants chose to be tried by judge alone. Justice Harrison began hearing evidence on 27 June; legal arguments concluded on 6 July.
Bush was represented by Attorneys Timothy Spencer and Nicola Moore; Sanchez by Orlando Pownall and James Buchanan, Crawford by Margeta Facey-Clarke and Trevor Burke.
Crown Counsel Candia James assisted Ms Richards.