Sentencing set for police officer in bribery case

Sentencing for a police officer convicted in May in connection with his soliciting a bribe has been scheduled for July 24 in Grand Court.

Elvis Kelsey Ebanks, who had 12 years of service as a police officer, was found guilty of two counts of soliciting a bribe and two counts of breach of trust under the Anti-Corruption Law. The charges stemmed from Ebanks soliciting a bribe in November 2012 from a man suspected of stealing a mobile phone.

A man who admitted finding the phone and keeping it had told police officers that Ebanks had asked him for money and threatened him with arrest and jail. Mr. Ebanks claimed the money – $500 – was a loan.

On Thursday, Crown prosecutor Trevor Ward and defense attorney Laurence Aiolfi presented their submissions before Justice Charles Quin in Grand Court.

The crown submitted a custodial sentence was required, with an appropriate starting point of three years.

Mr. Ward said the crime involved a “serious breach of trust” because the defendant “was in an important position.” He said the offense impacted the public confidence of police officers.

“What message would it send to the men and women [who are police officers] if Mr. Ebanks did not receive a custodial sentence?” Mr. Ward asked the court.

Mr. Aiolfi said a custodial sentence would weigh heavily on Mr. Ebanks’s family, both emotionally and financially.

“He’s a kind man, a respectful man, a quiet man, and a loving father and husband,” Mr. Aiolfi said.

Justice Quin said it was his view that the charges would attract a custodial sentence.

Ebanks will remain on bail until Justice Quin delivers a sentence on July 24 at 2:30 p.m.

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