From the Courts
August 6, 2004
Man jailed for wounding stepmother

“I have no reason not to believe your father and what your father said.
I don’t believe your father, an old man as he is, 78, will come here to tell lies on you, and I believe what Joycelyn said too”.
Those were the comments of Senior Magistrate Carl Joseph as he found Questelles resident Arthur Shepherd guilty of wounding. {{more}}
Shepherd was charged for wounding his sixty-three year-old stepmother, Joycelyn George on June 15.
George told the court she was at home with a little girl and common law husband, Wilfred Lavia, when Shepherd came and “demanded a gas bottle”. She said he told her he was tired telling her to stay out of his and his father’s business.
George also told the court her common law husband came to the kitchen where she was and told her to move. She said as she was moving toward the living room, she felt a burning pain in her back and realised that she had been injured by Shepherd who had a piece of stick with a piece of metal affixed to it.
Shepherd’s father, Wilfred Lavia, a Baptist Pointer, gave evidence which supported George’s evidence . He told the court that his son stuck his common law wife in her back with a piece of stick. He further testified that he saw blood coming from her back and he advised the woman to go to the police station.
Lavia also told the court that his son hid the stick and a little boy came and told him “Pointer Lavia, I see where Arthur hide the stick”. He said he instructed the boy to bring the stick to him and as the boy did so, he called the police, but the police, up to the time of the trial, did not go for the weapon.
Shepherd, when asked if he had any question to ask his father, said “I don’t have anything against him. He baptized me when I was twelve years and I don’t have anything against him”.
When it was time for him to give evidence, Shepherd said: “My Honour, with all the humility at my command I stand for the truth. This is false allegation. I did not do the woman anything. She said I chook her with a piece of stick, a stick with a piece of iron. If I had chook her it would have left a terrible hole”.
Shepherd added: “Is family depression going against me since my mother died… I am his last son. I am the heir… He baptized me, I am his son. He nuh suppose to have me before the magistrate as his son.
If I ask for bread will you give me stone? If I come and ask for fish will you give me a serpent?”
Having been found guilty as charged, Shepherd was asked if he had anything to say why sentence should not be passed on him. Holding his chin up and with a taut expression on his face, he told the Senior Magistrate: “The choice is yours my Honour”.
Shepherd was sentenced to six months imprisonment, effective from the date of his remand, June 21.