We contacted the Police on Thursday, to get an explanation for what happened in regards to the murder charges. We were not granted an interview however we were told that the DPP is being consulted on the matter concerning murder arraignment, which we were told is forthcoming.
DDP Cherylyn Vidal affirmed that she has received the files from the police, and has begun to peruse them. However, she said that from what she has gathered, police do not have sufficient evidence to indict the accused of murder. She explained why.
Cheryl-Lynn Vidal – Director of Public Prosecutions
“What they have at this present moment is insufficient to enable us to rebut what the suspect is saying in his statement. Where a suspect is raising self-defence, before the prosecution can successfully proceed with a case, we have to have evidence to prove that he was not in fact acting in self-defense. The burden is not on him to prove that he was.
We have to rebut the suggestion of self-defense. So that they actually have to gather evidence, that would enable us to say the account that he has given is not an accurate account.
Now in some cases we actually have eyewitnesses, who would be able to say, ‘Well, this person wasn’t attacking the other person. He was unarmed,’ etcetera, etcetera.
In this particular case, that kind of evidence is not available to us.”
Even though both parties began to work together after the fiasco on Wednesday, the relationship is clearly not at its best, and according to the DPP, the decision made by Police Department to totally oust the DPP’s office from deciding whether there is enough evidence to take a matter to court is very regressive.
Emanuel Pech – Plus News
“Do you that the Crown is moving backwards in a sense?
“Absolutely. Absolutely. As I said to you before, when I took over in 2008 this is what I met. There were persons sitting on remand for years, without any evidence whatsoever against them. The position of the police at that time was simply that, ‘Well we to get these people off of the streets,’
In some cases they didn’t appriciate the importance of certain evidence, so they arrested people thinking that they had sufficient evidence, when in fact it was not legally sufficient.
So we put all of these things in place to prevent that from happening, and also to be able to have greater control over the investigation process, and would lead to a prosecution.
So, at my office, we have those prosecutors. So there’s a prosecutor assigned to every single Formation, every single Precinct, a procecutor who conducts training with the specific police officers, who are there to advise on any matter, any issue, that they have.
We thought that it was a program to [assist].We were never aware that the police found that we were trampling on their powers of arrest.”
The DPP had spoken to the Commissioner of Police, who indicated to her that at no time would they be consulting with her, unless the person is charged for an indictable matter.