Sutherland represents self in manslaughter case
From the Courts
March 25, 2011

Sutherland represents self in manslaughter case

A verdict should have been delivered yesterday in the case involving Kellicia Sutherland, who is charged with causing the death of her children: Kayla Sutherland, 2, and Jarod Finch, 1.{{more}}

Sutherland, a Redemption Sharpes resident, is on trial at the criminal assizes of the High Court charged with two counts of manslaughter and abandoning a child under the age of two years old.

She represents herself in the matter.

On Monday, February 23, 2009, the charred remains of the toddlers were removed from a burnt out house in Redemption Sharpes, after the children were left at home alone.

The case, which started on Tuesday this week, heard nine prosecution witnesses giving testimony.

In a statement from Sutherland, taken by Detective Corporal Wilma Black of the Major Crimes Unit (MCU), she (Sutherland) stated that she had left home early that morning to go visit a friend at New Montrose.

Sutherland, in the statement, said she left both children sleeping with Jerry (Leroy Williams, owner of the house) when she left.

“I sometimes leave Kayla and Jarod with Jerry. Ah sleep out because Jerry bin home with them. Me never go home back. Ah don’t know way happen from that,” the statement read.

“Jerry call me in the morning and tell me to remember to bring pampers for Jay (Jarod). After Jerry done call me, I go back to sleep.”

Sutherland admitted that it was not the first time she slept out and left the children in the company of Jerry.

“I never leave them for a whole day. I does only lock dem up in the house and come back quick….” the statement went on to say.

The statement read that Sutherland received a another telephone call from Jerry at about 9am, stating that his house was on fire and that the children died.

“I was in a van when Jerry call and tell me, but me ain go Sharpes…”

Sutherland said she went to the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital instead, but the bodies of her children were not at the hospital. She then went to the police with the matter.

Sutherland also mentioned in the statement that she used to “push in the door and the bolt would lock it self and when I return I would open it wid the key.”

Surgical pathologist Tracy Bernard, in her testimony, told the court that the children died as a result of Thermal injury extensive with charring of the body.

Bernard said the chest cavity of both bodies was revealed, the scalp removed, exposing soft tissue and 100 per cent of the skin was charred.

Lawyer, Station Sergeant Colin Williams leads the crown’s case.(KW)