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Murder trial ‘too long’

Murder trial ‘too long’

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The Preliminary Inquiry into the death of Jason Charles had been scheduled to end on Wednesday, February 25, 2009, but the four accused will now have to wait longer to know their fate.{{more}}

Kasanke James and Anthony Lavia, 32, were jointly charged last May 11, 2008, for the murder of Charles. The wives of both James and Lavia, mother and daughter 42-year-old Marilyn and 25-year-old Kawana Wilkins, were at first charged with aiding and abetting in Charles’ murder. The charges were later upgraded to murder at the start of the Preliminary Inquiry in January at the Serious Offences Court in Kingstown.

The Prosecution, led by Inspector Nigel Butcher, asked the court to grant them a further adjournment for the evidence of a person they consider to be a key witness.The witness was scheduled to be present in court, but was nowhere to be seen. A summons was requested by the prosecution for the witness to report to court.

So far, ten witnesses have presented evidence in the case which started on January 12, 2009. Chief Magistrate Sonya Young complained that the case was going on too long and said she had expected the inquiry to end on Wednesday. Young granted a final adjournment to March 13, 2009.

During the evidence of a witness, the mother of the deceased became overwhelmed with emotion and left the court with tears trickling down her cheeks. One could have heard her wailing from inside the courtroom.

The 30-year-old Charles, formerly of Redemption Sharpes, was involved in an argument with another man over a pair of shoes, which resulted in Charles being chopped several times about the body. He succumbed to his injuries the following day at the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital. (VM)

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