A Summary Court magistrate sentenced Courtney Wisdom Jr., 27, to one month in prison, suspended for two years, and fined $1,150 Thursday for riding a dirt bike recklessly and negligently.
Wisdom was arrested following an incident on Nov. 26, 2017 in which he “pulled a wheelie” and allegedly taunted police officers. In earlier court appearance, Wisdom pleaded guilty to committing a reckless and negligent act and five related traffic charges, and Magistrate Grace Donalds sentenced him for those offences on Thursday.
The court heard that Wisdom was part of a group of around 100 bikers that had illegally assembled on Bodden Town Road in the area of Breakers. The group approached a police roadblock, and Wisdom was accused of riding towards the officers, turning around and then riding at them again.
Crown counsel Greg Walcolm told the court that Wisdom had no prior convictions, and he suggested that the magistrate should consider a sentence similar to one for dangerous driving.
Walcolm also noted a recent precedent in the case of Alvin Shaquille Ebanks, who was sentenced to six months in prison after being accused of “riding and stunting” during a police chase last year.
Defence counsel Jonathon Hughes said a report prepared by probation officers noted that Wisdom was a low risk of re-offending, and he said that his client’s employer had stated that he is both reliable and dependable. Wisdom is an aspiring professional motorcycle rider, Hughes said.
Magistrate Donalds noted that in the Ebanks case, Magistrate Valdis Foldats had said that reckless bikers are a menace to the public and that sentences handed to them should serve as a deterrent.
Hughes acknowledged that but pointed out several differences between the two cases, notably that Ebanks was driving a stolen motorcycle and that he had led police on a half-hour chase.
Magistrate Donalds sentenced Wisdom to a one-month suspended sentence for the reckless and negligent act and fined him $350 and disqualified from driving for 12 months for driving without insurance. The start-date of the disqualification was back-dated to June 18, 2018.
Wisdom was fined $325 for holding no registration and $250 for using a vehicle without a valid certificate of roadworthiness. He was also fined $75 for riding without a helmet and $150 for failing to comply with an order given by a police officer. A charge of dangerous driving was left on file.
“I will pay that today, ma’am,” said Wisdom at the close of the proceedings.