Marsha Marilyn Kelly was sentenced to 11 months in prison on Thursday for harbouring a deportee, theft and damage to property in relation to a case from 2017. Kelly spent eight months on curfew and was given half credit for that, reducing her sentence of imprisonment to seven months.
Kelly, a 37-year-old mother of two, had pleaded guilty to allowing Jamaican national Norval Maconia Barrett to stay at her home even though she knew that he had illegally entered Cayman. Barrett, 34, was shot dead by police in January of 2017 when they tried to apprehend him at Kelly’s residence.
Magistrate Kirsty-Ann Gunn said Thursday that a social inquiry report found Kelly to be “willing to support crime when she views it to be a benefit to herself”. Kelly, who actively participated in the theft of two boat motors valued at $19,000, was found to be a medium risk of re-offending.
Barrett and Kelly began their relationship when Barrett was incarcerated at Northward Prison on a robbery charge, and he was deported from Cayman to Jamaica in August of 2016. Kelly was on the plane with him that day, said Magistrate Gunn, and knew he was a man known to the criminal justice system.
“She went into this with eyes wide open,” said Magistrate Gunn.
Barrett returned to Cayman illegally in December of 2016 and Kelly allowed him to stay at her home. Magistrate Gunn said that Kelly cooked for Barrett and was “intimate” with him, encouraging him to stay despite the illegal nature of his arrival. Barrett stayed for just over a month, and Kelly was found guilty for aiding Barrett in stealing and damaging two outboard boat motors.
Magistrate Gunn said Thursday that Kelly had significant culpability and that the risk of harm to the community for aiding and abetting Barrett in crimes was “as high as one can imagine”.
“I accept she loved him deeply but the court can have little sympathy,” said Magistrate Gunn.
The maximum sentence for a first-time offence of harbouring a deportee is one year. Kelly was sentenced to 33 weeks for that offense and given full credit for making an early guilty plea. That brought the sentence to 22 weeks, with one month served consecutively to the theft and damage charge.
Kelly was found guilty of theft and damage to the outboard motors after a trial, and Magistrate Gunn imposed a sentence of 14 months for that charge with a four-month reduction for being of previously good character. Magistrate Gunn said that 10 months would be imposed for the theft and damage charges and one month served consecutively for harbouring a deportee, bringing the total to 11 months.
The theft, said Magistrate Gunn, was “brazen” and required planning. Kelly was given credit for four months of time served for the eight months she spent on probation and curfew.
In addition to her custodial sentence, Kelly was fined $660 for permitting a person to drive a vehicle with expired license, $690 for use/keep of a road vehicle required to be licensed, $500 for making a false representation and $400 for employment of a person outside the conditions contained in a permit.
She will have six months after her release from prison to make the requisite payments.