Decisions awaited or further argument scheduled
Three murder verdicts were set down for appeal during the Court of Appeal’s session that began on 16 July and ended this past Friday, 3 August. No final decisions had been handed down by the time the court adjourned.
The first appeal was by the Crown, arguing against the acquittal of Devon Anglin for the fatal shooting of four-year-old Jeremiah Barnes, who was a passenger in the car driven by his father in February 2010. Justice Howard Cooke heard the matter without a jury and found that the identification of Anglin by the boy’s parents was unreliable. The judge concluded that the effect of the identification evidence was that the Crown had not adduced evidence of any probative value which would permit him to look at any supporting evidence.
The Court of Appeal heard arguments only on whether the appeal could be heard. “We need to be persuaded by the Crown that we have jurisdiction,” president Sir John Chadwick said.
Having heard arguments, the judges concluded that they should not dismiss the appeal at that stage. They directed that it be set down for the November session, when attorneys may raise further arguments about jurisdiction but in the context of the merits of the case.
Leonard Antonio Ebanks appealed his conviction for the fatal shooting of Tyrone Burrell in September, 2010. He was found guilty by Justice Charles Quin after choosing trial by judge alone.
There were several grounds of appeal filed, but his attorneys concentrated on arguments that there was apparent bias on the part of the judge.
Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions Trevor Ward explained that if this argument is resolved in Ebanks’ favour, that would dispose of the appeal. If not, then the other grounds would have to be heard in November.
The third appeal was by attorneys for Raziel Jeffers, who was convicted after trial by judge alone for fatally shooting Marcus Leon Ebanks in West Bay in July 2009. In this matter, arguments were completed, including submissions on the issue of apparent bias.
Justice Chadwick said the court wanted to take time to consider its decision and would deliver it “as soon as we can” (Caymanian Compass, 30 July).
Eleven criminal matters were listed for the court’s summer session along with seven civil matters.
Hearing them with Justice Chadwick were Justices Elliot Mottley and Abdulai Conteh.