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Garraway pleads guilty to gun possession, gets three years

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Before Kamal Garraway was led away to prison where he will be spending the next three years, he held and kissed his four-month-old daughter.{{more}}

On February 15, High Court Judge Wesley James handed down the sentence to the 20-year-old Kingstown resident after he pleaded guilty to possession of a firearm.

Garraway, along with 23-year-old Barrouallie resident, Jamie Pierre, appeared before the court on a robbery and gun charge. Pierre was charged with robbing Brian Lee of Barrouallie of $1,460 on January 29, 2010.

Garraway was also charged with possession of a gun.

Pierre was also sentenced to three years imprisonment, but his sentence was suspended for three years.

The court heard that Pierre and Lee were friends and were drinking at a shop at the Leeward Bus Terminal. Both men then made their way to the Bayview car park, where a function was to be held later that evening.

Shortly after midnight, the men decided to leave the function and take a taxi to Barrouallie. They caught a taxi in the Hospital Road area and upon approaching the Super J Supermarket, the vehicle made a left turn into the gap leading to Cemetery Hill.

When the taxi stopped at a dead end, a man armed with a gun held up Lee, while Pierre relieved Lee of his money, which he had tucked away in his shoes.

After the gunman fled the scene, Pierre drove off with the Taxi operator, leaving Lee at the scene.

Investigations later led to the arrest of Garraway who was found in possession of a firearm.

Pierre’s counsel Ronald Marks, in mitigation, indicated to the court that his client entered a guilty plea and has saved the court time.

On January 31, 2010, Pierre gave a statement to the police and admitted his involvement and explained what his role in the crime was.

Marks made the case that Pierre and Lee were intoxicated at the time of the incident.

“This is not a robbery that involves tremendous amount of premeditation; this is a case where the defendant took advantage of an opportunity,” Marks said.

Stating that his client admitted that he was part of the plan, Marks said Pierre “accepts full responsibility and is extremely remorseful.”

He said his client did nothing more than stand by and take the money.

Continuing his mitigation, Marks said the 23-year-old is the father of two children, one 1 year old and the other six months. He added that Pierre was brought up in less than ideal circumstances, without the presence of a mother and father.

He, however, made the point that that was no excuse for criminal action.

“Persons who grow up in these situations are likely to offend. I ask the court not to impose a sentence that would put these children in a similar situation…,” Marks l Continued from page 4

said.

Marks pleaded with the court to impose a fine on his client, or if a custodial sentence were to be imposed, that it be suspended. He also asked for time for his client to repay Lee the money.

Garraway, who had no legal representation in the matter, called his sister to speak on his behalf.

His sister told the court that he was never known to give trouble and moved to different homes throughout his life.

The 20-year-old begged the judge not to send him to prison as he has a four month old daughter and asked that he be placed on a curfew or bond.

Garraway had pleaded guilty halfway through the trial.

Justice James in his sentence, told Garraway that he was regarding him as a first time offender and that he was entitled to a discount in sentencing.

“I am going to be generous on you and give you a sentence of three years,” James ruled.

Along with his 3 year suspended sentence, Pierre was ordered to pay Lee $2,200 compensation for other items also taken during the robbery. The money is to be paid in full on or before May 15. Failure to honour the commitment will result in a six month prison sentence.

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