Bail was refused for a teenager who appeared in Summary Court on Wednesday, charged with possession of an unlicensed firearm.
Torry Javier Powery-Monterroso, 18, was remanded in custody until April 5 after Magistrate Kirsty-Ann Gunn heard a bail application and the Crown’s objections. Crown Counsel Scott Wainwright advised that the gun was loaded with six rounds of ammunition.
Mr. Wainwright said Powery-Monterroso was arrested after police received a report of two men with a firearm driving around the School Road/Rock Hole area in a white van, around 2 a.m. on March 25.
The prosecutor said officers responding to the call saw the vehicle on Edward Street, heading toward Shedden Road. They attempted to stop it by means of blue lights and siren, but the vehicle continued. As police drove alongside, the van door opened. One of the officers recognized Powery-Monterroso and saw that he was carrying a silver handgun, Mr. Wainwright said.
Powery-Monterroso jumped from the vehicle while it was still moving; he landed on the pavement and ran off. The officer lost sight of him for a few seconds, but then found him and arrested him.
Mr. Wainwright said Powery-Monterroso did not have the gun on him when he was arrested, but the prosecution’s case will be that he discarded it while briefly out of sight of the officers. The area was secured and a silver 9mm handgun was recovered. There were six rounds of ammunition in it.
The vehicle was later recovered in the vicinity of McField Lane. Registration was checked and the owner was discovered to be a man who is deceased.
Police suspected that a relative of the deceased owner was the driver. He was being sought.
Meanwhile, fingerprints were taken from the van and the firearm.
Mr. Wainwright cited the seriousness of the offense as one reason for objecting to bail. If convicted after trial, Powery-Monterroso faces a minimum sentence of 10 years, so that could make him a flight risk, he said. Further, anyone who had access to a loaded gun is a bail risk and ought not be at large in public, Mr. Wainwright submitted.
Defense attorney Alice Carver suggested that bail could be granted with an electronic monitor and an address away from the George Town area. “He has never been to prison. He has had a brief taste of it over the long weekend,” she told the court.
Ms. Carver said her client understood that any misstep would mean going back into custody; he was willing to report to police daily or even more often if required. He had been offered a job before this incident and if granted bail, he would pursue the offer. She said Powery-Monterroso has the support of his mother and a girlfriend.
The magistrate said she was not satisfied at this time that the “bail package” proposed by the defense adequately addressed the concerns Mr. Wainwright had identified. The magistrate noted that the charge could be dealt with in Grand Court or Summary Court.
- This story has been amended to reflect the correct remand date.