Justice Algernon Smith gave his judgment on Tuesday morning. He had heard evidence and legal arguments between 23 May and 5 July.
This was the second trial for Perez, who had been found not guilty after trial in October 2009. That verdict was successfully appealed by the Crown and the Court of Appeal ordered a new trial. The reason for that decision was the trial judge’s misstatement as to the standard of proof the Crown had to meet: Justice Roy Anderson had said the standard is enhanced when the charge is one of murder.
Perez was released from custody after the first verdict but taken back into custody after ruling by the Court of Appeal.
The case for the Prosecution in the retrial was presented by Senior Crown Counsel Trevor Ward and included fingerprint and footprint evidence.
Defence Attorneys Anthony Donne and Anthony Akiwumi argued even if the fingerprints did belong to Perez, they could have been left at the scene when Perez was a guest there some weeks earlier. They also questioned the reliability of the footprint evidence because it was a socked foot as compared with the defendant’s bare foot.
Perez, now 31, had denied going to the home of Martin Gareau that weekend and provided evidence of his whereabouts, including a portion of that weekend he spent at a hotel with his girlfriend.