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Man strikes ex-lover in face with hammer, jailed for five years

Man strikes ex-lover in face with hammer, jailed for five years


A man who used a hammer to strike his ex-lover in her face, was yesterday sentenced to five years imprisonment by Chief Magistrate Rechanne Browne-Matthias.

The Chief Magistrate said she imposed the sentence to send a strong message about domestic violence, and Andrew “Macka” Harry, {{more}}33, a resident of Chateaubelair, would be the first to receive the message.

In addition to being sentenced to five years for unlawfully and maliciously wounding Denisia “Ginger” Slater, Harry was sentenced to 15 months for assaulting PC 350 Derrick Humphrey; two years for assault causing bodily harm and a further 15 months for resisting arrest by Humphrey, on April 25, 2015, in Kingstown.

The sentences will run concurrently.

When she took the witness stand last Wednesday, Slater, a 30-year-old businesswoman, said she was at the reclamation site, just opposite the Leeward Bus Terminal, operating her vending business when Harry approached her.

The woman, who now carries a large scar on the left side of her face from the attack, told the court that Harry, who is the father of one her children approached her and began arguing.

Slater told the magistrate that four days before the attack, she had obtained, from the Court, a protection order against him.

She testified that Harry held on to her and “scuffled her up” eventhough she was holding a one-month-old baby. Slater said she handed the baby back to its mother and she and Harry began to tussle.

Harry testified that it was at that point that Harry took up a hammer and struck her in her face, causing blood to gush from the wound. The petite Slater also said she was dragged to the ground following which Harry continued his onslaught by punching her in the face.

According to Slater, Harry was attempting to drag her into the sea to drown her when the altercation came to an end just opposite the Agricultural Input Warehouse on Bay Street.

One prosecution witness testified that at about 1:30 p.m., she heard shouting.

“I went down behind the paint shop and I pull way Ginger from Maka. He had her head lay down on a wall and he was hitting her. When I pull she way, he chuck me and tell me [expletive] you.”

The witness said she called the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) and reported the matter.

“He (Macka) held Ginger by she hand and he say ‘yo war see way me get fo Ginger long time’. He was pulling she and carrying her by the waterfront close by and he began beating her. When the officer Humphrey came, he identified himself and tell Macka he under arrest.

“He let go Ginger and the officer held on to Macka and he tried to pull the officer in the sea water and the officer let him go. After that, the officer fell down and he (Macka) ran towards Bottom Town area,” she testified.

In Constable Humphrey’s testimony, he said that day, he was at the Leeward Bus Terminal dressed in plain clothes when a young lady approached him and reported the matter.

“I proceeded to Bottom Town. On reaching the Banana Growers Association Warehouse, I looked in the direction of sea and saw Macka holding onto Ginger and was pulling her in the direction of the sea.

“I called to him and told him to let go of her, but he didn’t. I went closer and I saw what appeared to be blood coming from her face. I took her away from Macka and held onto him and he said he not going anywhere with me,” Humphrey stated, adding that he and Macka knew each other very well.

He stated that they began to wrestle and Harry pulled him between some stones on the sea side and managed to get away.

Humphrey sustained injuries to his arm and knees.

Representing himself, Harry told the court that Slater was the aggressor in the matter and that she was intoxicated from a night of drinking.

“When I go by she, she asked me if I’m not going home. She started to get on and she blast a bottle at me and caught someone else. When she coming to me, she fall between the stone and I go and take her out.

“She come and tek the hammer and pelt it at me. I get damage on my hand too,” Harry said, pointing to upper left arm.

He further stated that he ran behind Slater towards Bottom Town because she had pelted him with stones. Harry said while there, they began to wrestle in the middle of the road.

Under cross-examination by Senior Prosecutor Adolphus Delpesche, Harry said the Slater sustained the injury to her face when he bit her on the right side of her face the night before the incident.

However, Slater was called back to the dock and asked to show the court the right side of her face, which showed no visible injuries or scar.

He then told the court that Slater may have sustained the injury to the left side of her face when she fell between the stones.

“I never hit she with no hammer. Is minor injuries she get. If I hit she with a hammer she woulda knock out. It was when she buss her face.

Harry accused all the prosecution witnesses of being in concert to tell lies on him.

“All them dey pon plan thing. They lie! All of them lying. I am telling the truth, your honour,” he continued.

Harry was also given the opportunity to call witnesses to testify, but declined to do so and told the magistrate to continue with the proceedings.

Mitigating on his own behalf after being found guilty, Harry asked the court, to fine him because he wanted to spend time with his children.

The magistrate quickly interjected, stating that a fine was out of the question.

Delpesche, in addressing the court, said, “We live in a society today where domestic violence is out of hand. We had the most recent issue of such on the weekend where we had a homicide and suicide. it is very said in this one by one country.

“The law courts must send a message to these wannabe abusers that when they are contemplating their mischief, the court provides remedies if they are caught,” Delpesche said.

An irate Browne-Matthias, in her remarks, said she could not fathom how a man could claim to love a woman and abuse her.

“I just can’t understand it. You slap her, kick her, pull hair and want her to lay down with you after? I can’t understand that. Who wants to be around an abuser?

“I wouldn’t want anything to do with you. Anyone with your traits, women need to stay far. It’s just crazy. Women need to run from the sweet talk and run for the hills.

“You have a daughter. Wouldn’t it be funny if she met the same fate? When women take a stance, they are not anybody’s possession. We must stop this crap out of St. Vincent. You are going to be the first to get this message.

“You need help. You have a daughter. This is the mother of your daughter. If you drown her, what will become of your daughter. I really can’t get it. This is so horrific . You just picture your daughter being in that position. Think about that when you’re around there,” she said.(KW)