A man stopped for traffic violations on Tuesday ended up in Summary Court on Thursday charged with possession of an unlicensed handgun and 12 rounds of ammunition.
John Brandon Smith, 24, allegedly made admissions about the firearms, which were found in the South Sound home of a local businessman. Crown counsel Kenneth Ferguson told Magistrate Angelyn Hernandez that the businessman had agreed about a month ago to let Smith and his wife stay in the home.
After Smith was stopped in a vehicle, a canine officer checking the vehicle indicated that someone may have handled a firearm. That led to a request for a search of where Smith was staying and the owner of the premises consented to a search.
A knapsack was found containing male clothing and the firearms. Smith’s wife admitted the bag belonged to her and she had brought it when she came from Cayman Brac.
She denied knowledge of the firearms and suggested it might be her husband who had placed the items in it.
Mr. Ferguson said that when Smith was questioned he said he was “coming straight” with the officers and the ammunition belonged to him, not his wife.
Defense attorney Prathna Bodden argued that the Crown could not object to bail simply because of the seriousness of the charge – there had to be more details.
The defendant was of good character and employed; his mother was present to stand as surety.
“There are a number of conditions that could satisfy concerns,” she suggested.
Ms. Bodden noted that the knapsack was found in the living room and there was some confusion as to whose it was.
She pointed out that no admissions were made in interview.
The magistrate directed that papers in the case be served on Ms. Bodden by Monday, May 8, so that a proper bail application could be made.
Mr. Ferguson added that there had not yet been time for forensic examination of the firearms, which meant no fingerprint or DNA evidence was available.
The charges against Smith describe the gun as a Raven Arms MP-25 .25 semi-automatic pistol.