Murder appeal case dismissed

On Thursday he Court of Appeal handed down its first decision for 2015, deciding to dismiss an appeal against a conviction of murder and sentence of life imprisonment against 28 year old Gregory August, convicted of the murder of 73 year old Western Paradise Village resident Alvin Robinson.

Gregory August’s conviction and sentence of life imprisonment were affirmed.

vlcsnap-2015-02-06-05h12m20s176Alvin Robinson, who was physically disabled and blind in one eye, was stabbed 9 times in his face and neck. He was found on his bed clinging to life and died while on his way to the hospital.

The incident occurred in May 2009 at Mr Robinson’s home at mile 8 on George Price Highway.

On November 21, 2012, Gregory August was convicted of Alvin Robinson’s murder, by a jury in the court of Justice Adolph Lucas. The evidence at the trial was circumstantial and the prosecution had relied on blood that was found on a tennis shoe and clothes that belonged to August. The blood matched Robinson’s blood type.

However, Belize does not have the capability to test the DNA of the collected blood samples to see that they did in fact match Mr Robinson.

At the hearing in the March 2014 session of the court, attorney Anthony Sylvestre, who replaced late original trial attorney Lionel Welch, argued that the circumstantial evidence was insufficient in itself to tie his client to the crime, and that Justice Lucas failed to properly direct the jury on the legal concept of “joint enterprise”, as it was alleged that Gregory August and another unknown person killed Alvin Robinson.

The Director of Public Prosecutions, Cheryl Lynn Vidal, represented that office.

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