Loaded gun recovered from man’s hotel room

Defendant remanded in custody

Police seized this .38 revolver with six rounds in it during a search of the hotel room.

James Harris Winton Jr., 37, appeared in Summary Court on Monday facing charges of possession of an unlicensed firearm and six rounds of ammunition.

Crown counsel Aaliyah McCarthy told Magistrate Valdis Foldats that police obtained a search warrant and on Feb. 7, and went to the Holiday Inn, where Mr. Winton had been staying. In a specified room, in the room safe, they found a .38 revolver with six rounds in it.

A police press release indicated that when Mr. Winton was arrested, he had a quantity of substance believed to be cocaine and he was suspected of having consumed cocaine.

Mr. Winton was described in the press release as a George Town man; he is originally from George Town but has been residing in West Bay.

Ms. McCarthy said the defendant had admitted the gun was his and the woman in the room had nothing to do with it.

No plea was entered, however, since the papers in the case were not yet ready to give to the defense.

Defense attorney Lee Halliday-Davis applied for bail. She told the court that Mr. Winton’s passport had been seized during the search. A Caymanian, he has children here as well as his girlfriend, his mother and grandmother.

This was a very serious matter, the attorney acknowledged, but Mr. Winton had given “full and frank disclosure … he has taken responsibility,” she said.

He was willing to wear an electronic monitor and abide by a curfew; he had just inherited some money and could put up $12,000 as a surety, she added.

The magistrate withheld bail, saying that anyone who has a loaded gun is operating outside normal behavior for Cayman citizens.

He pointed out that Mr. Winton could take his bail application to the Grand Court.

Meanwhile, he was remanded in custody to return to Summary Court on Feb. 26 via video link.

Possession of an unlicensed firearm is a charge that can be dealt with in either Summary Court or Grand Court.