Oswald Thomas docks into prison
From the Courts
May 11, 2007
Oswald Thomas docks into prison

Instead of being surrounded by clear blue waters and living in a gigantic cruise liner, Oswald Thomas will now be surrounded by barb wire walls and prison inmates for the next 11 months.{{more}}

Thomas, 44, a sailor of Edinboro was given the custodial sentence by Chief Magistrate Simone Churaman on Tuesday at the Serious Offences Court after he pleaded guilty to discharging a .22-loaded firearm at Edinboro public road and having round of .22 ammunition in his possession.

The court heard that on Sunday May 6, 2007 the defendant had a dispute with Jeffery Duncan at about 8.30 am. The court heard that Thomas got angry and struck Duncan with a piece of board. The complainant then began firing stones at him. Thomas then ran to his yard and got the firearm and tried shooting at Jefferson but it was stuck. After several failed attempts to get a shot off, one of the bullets fell from the gun and then he managed to fire at the complainant. Luckily, Duncan escaped unhurt.

Chief Magistrate Churaman said that she could not deny him a custodial sentence amidst the recent spate of gun related offences around St Vincent and the Grenadines. Churaman said that Thomas’ action was of an illegal nature and that he went home to get the gun and he had to try for some time before he could get a shot off.

Defense attorney Samantha Robertson told the court that her client had been the subject of ongoing threats made by Duncan. She said the complainant threatened to kill Thomas and burn his house on several occasions. Robertson said that on the morning of the incident, Duncan threatened him and Thomas only discharged the firearm in the hope that Duncan would desist from his violent behavior. Robertson added that even though her client was not the holder of a gun licence, he was only trying to protect himself.