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Woman to be sentenced for killing boyfriend

Woman to be sentenced for killing boyfriend

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Come July 15, 2011 Shanette Cumberbatch will be sentenced for the causing the death of Rakeesh Sutherland in October 2008.{{more}}

On Tuesday, June 28, Cumberbatch, 25, appeared before Justice Frederick Bruce-Lyle and pleaded not guilty to murder, but guilty to the lesser charge of manslaughter.

Sutherland, 27, a mechanic of Queens Drive, died on October 13, 2008 after succumbing to head injuries. He was struck with a piece of wood to the back of his head.

A post mortem report revealed that Sutherland died as a result of blunt trauma.

Lawyer Kay Bacchus Browne told the court that she wanted a Social Welfare report to be done before she mitigates on behalf of Cumberbatch.

In a statement in which Cumberbatch confessed to the crime, she said on October 10, 2008, she left town and was heading to Georgetown with someone named “Safi” to make deliveries in a truck.

In the statement read out by crown counsel Sejilla McDowall, Cumberbatch said Rakeesh had telephoned her about four times that day to inquire of her whereabouts. She said the first time Rakeesh called her was while she was leaving town.

“He ask me when I was coming back down (town) and I tell him I don’t know; Maybe four or 5…,” the statement read.

Sutherland said she received a second call from Rakeesh while she was in Prospect. “He say, way yo leave and gone Georgetown with Safi for and I say, ‘Boy! Way you calling me every minute for?’ “

The statement went onto to say that Rakeesh called Cumberbatch two more times.

When she got to Kingstown, Sutherland said ‘Safi’ dropped her off at Monica’s Supermarket and went on his way. She stayed at the supermarket with Rakeesh and his friends, before she left for home about 15 minutes later with Rakeesh and a man named “Warren”.

The statement read that when Cumberbatch arrived home about 9:45 p.m., she fed the baby and then took a shower. She said she left Warren and Rakeesh outside and told them that she was going to bed.

She said moments later, Rakeesh came into the bedroom, took a shower and came on the bed. “…Rakeesh come on the bed and tell me he want some sex. So I say no, and he ask why I don’t want to, and I told him because I don’t want to”.

That’s when she said Rakeesh asked if something was going on between her and ‘Safi’. She said she told him no, but Rakeesh kept asking the same question.

She said she went out into the yard and took up a piece of wood and placed it next to the door of the porch. When she went back into the house, she said that Rakeesh continued with his questioning. “…I still deny it, because I didn’t want to tell him the truth,” the statement said.

Cumberbatch said in her statement that she and Safi had had a sexual relationship for about four months. She, however, said that she and Rakeeesh had been living together for a year and eight months and had a child together.

Cumberbatch noted that she was sitting in the living room when Rakeesh came and pulled the television remote from her and stood with a serious look on his face.

She said she stood up and asked Rakeesh, “Yo war do me something?” That was when she said he took his elbow and struck her in the stomach.

Cumberbatch said she went outside, grabbed the piece of wood she had placed at the door and struck him while his back was turned.

“I didn’t know the wood hit him in his head. I thought it was behind his neck, because he was standing. She went on to say that Rakeesh again struck her in the stomach, so she hit him again with the wood.

Cumberbatch said Rakeesh tried to walk, but fell and hit the dining table. She said he then staggered on his way to the bedroom. After Rakeesh made it to the bed, Cumberbatch said she saw blood and Rakeesh got up and went to the bathroom. She also said when she struck him the second time, he defecated in the living room. She admitted that she cleaned it up with a towel and threw it in the garbage. She also noted that his eyes were bulging.

The statement said Cumberbatch telephoned Rakeesh’s father and his co-worker, who came to the house and took Rakeesh to the hospital. Cumberbatch said she told them that someone had broken into the house; struck Rakeesh in his head and then raped her. “I told them I was raped by the man, but that was a lie too. No one broke into the house and I was never raped,” the statement said.

She said she told the police the same story because she feared if she told the truth, she would go to prison and not see her baby again.

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