From the Courts
September 15, 2015
John acquitted of gun possession charge

Campden Park resident Tywon John walked away from the Serious Offences Court a free man last Friday, September 11, after a decision by the prosecution to withdraw a charge of gun possession against him.{{more}}

The 23-year-old man was charged with possession of a 9 millimetre Beretta pistol without having a licence, on June 1, 2015, at Chauncey.

“I feel real great. I am glad that my lawyer Jomo Thomas defended me. I am really thankful that I am off this case,” a relieved John told SEARCHLIGHT minutes after being freed.

According to the facts in the case, at approximately 6:05 p.m. on June 1, John was among several passengers travelling in a omnibus at Chauncey when it was stopped by police officers who were carrying out a stop and search operation.

All of the passengers were asked to alight the vehicle and when the officers searched John, nothing illegal was found.

A search was then carried out in the omnibus and a black plastic bag containing the gun was found on the floor near to the area where he was sitting in the omnibus.

When questioned about the gun, John denied any knowledge of the weapon.

The court also heard that two other persons were picked up with John, but were subsequently released without being charged.

During cross examination, defence attorney Thomas asked one of the police officers if there were any passengers seated beside, in front of and behind his client, to which the officer replied yes.

Thomas further asked if the defendant admitted to ownership of the gun during an interview with police; he said no.

Following cross-examination, senior prosecutor Adolphus Delpesche rose to his feet and said: “If there is no admission, no ownership, I am not wasting any further time with this matter.”

In an interview with SEARCHLIGHT, Thomas said the case was a waste of time and he is perplexed as to why it was tried.

“I don’t know why they decided to go ahead with this case. There was no evidence that this man was in any way in control or had custody of the gun. I was very confident going into this case,” Thomas said.

He said he spoke with senior prosecutor Delpesche in relation to the evidence, but he (Delpesche) wanted to have the matter ventilated.

“We did that and I think that justice has taken its course.

In his explanation, Delpesche said the way the evidence was adduced, it was clear that they could not satisfy the threshold to prove a case beyond reasonable doubt.

“The evidence was such that we could not win. He may or may not have been in possession of the gun, but the evidence didn’t show that he was in possession and in the circumstances, I withdrew the matter,” Delpesche said.(KW)