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Woman wants man to make good on court award

Woman wants man to make good on court award


A woman who lost her right arm in a shooting incident in 2006 is pleading with the man responsible to pay her the EC$408,255.77 in damages she was awarded by the High Court in 2014.

Former bartender Karen John says David Debique, a contractor, has not paid her a cent of the {{more}}money she was awarded by the court in civil proceedings, even though he is working.

She sued him after he pleaded guilty to the criminal charges of wounding with intent and the unlawful use of a firearm.

“He is working right now, here in Glen and is giving people the impression that he is supporting me,” a distraught John told SEARCHLIGHT.

The unemployed mother of three, who lives in rented accommodation at Glen, said while she is grateful for the $225 a month she receives in public assistance, it is woefully insufficient to meet her needs and Debique should live up to his obligation.

“I have no help at all; I have to try to wash all thing, with my one hand, “ she explained.

John’s woes began on December 28, 2006, while she was a bartender employed at Fun City, Lower Bay Street.

DeBique, a customer, who, according to the court judgement, was drunk, “recklessly” discharged a firearm at the bar, shooting John in the right side of her chest, paralyzing her right and dominant arm, which had to be amputated at the shoulder.

The 32-year-old woman said she has had to undergo several surgeries and still has the bullet lodged in her. She said earlier on, DeBique, through his lawyer, the late Bertram Stapleton, had agreed to pay her $700 a month, which was the salary she was making when she was shot.

According to John, DeBique paid her “a couple times,” but soon stopped, saying he could not afford to keep up with the payments.

In the 2014 judgement, the High Court, describing the incident as “most unfortunate,” ordered that in addition to damages of EC$408,255.77, Debique is required to pay John interest on the sum assessed at the rate of six per cent per annum from the date of assessment until final payment.

“The man is out, he is working and he is not paying any money,” John told SEARCHLIGHT.

She said she has tried to reach her lawyer Duane Daniel to determine what additional steps she can take, but has been unable to make contact with him.

Efforts to get additional help from the Social Welfare Department have, so far, also proved futile.

“Now I went back to them to see if I could get some more help; they deny it, saying that they have to do a home visit first and stuff like that before they could continue to help me.”

John has one son and two daughters, aged six, 11 and 15 respectively.

Efforts by SEARCHLIGHT to reach Debique for comment were unsuccessful. (AS)