Judge’s illness delays murder trial again

The trial of two fishermen charged with the murder of three children was adjourned yesterday until next Tuesday because the presiding judge was ill.

It was first reported on Wednesday that Senior Puisne Judge Gloria Smith was ill and the jurors were asked to return yesterday.

When they returned, Justice Lloyd Hibbert informed them that the judge was still sick.

The trial, which began on September 18, has been hampered by several adjournments because some of the jurors reported ill because of the chikungunya virus.

Last week, the prosecution closed its case, and defence lawyers made submissions in the absence of the jury.

On Monday, three of the 12 jurors did not turn up because they were ill and the jurors were advised to return on Wednesday. All 12 jurors turned up on Wednesday, but the case could not continue because of the judge’s illness.

The Crown is alleging that on September 14, 2004, Rohan McCarthy and Ricardo Britton threw gasolene around Pansy Henry’s three-bedroom wooden house and lit it with a bottle torch.

Three of her children – five-year-old twin boys Tyrique and Tyrone Henry and three-year-old Moesha Lee – perished in the fire.

Other cases in the Home Circuit Court are also being affected by the chikungunya virus.


Source: Jamaica Gleaner