From the Courts
September 22, 2015
Teen sentenced to three years for gun, ammo possession

Many persons who appear before the court on gun possession charges give the defence that they found the weapon and were about to hand it in. Garvin Providence kept that trend going yesterday.{{more}}

The 19-year-old Union Island resident appeared at the Serious Offences Court and was sentenced to three years imprisonment, after he pleaded guilty to possession of a 9mm pistol. He also pleaded guilty to possession of one live round of 9mm ammunition and two live rounds of .380 ammunition without a licence issued under the Firearm Act, at Kingstown on September 14, 2015.

In addition to being sentenced on the gun charge, Chief Magistrate Rechanne Browne-Matthias further sentenced Providence to one month in jail for the one round of ammunition and two months for the two live rounds of .380 ammunition.

However, his sentences will run concurrently.

According to the facts, Providence went to the Grenadines wharf in Kingstown and as he was going through of one the gates to board a ferry, he was stopped by police constable 389 Baptiste.

The officer requested a search of his person, but nothing illegal was found. A search carried out on a bag in the defendant’s possession turned up the unlicensed pistol.

When cautioned, Providence told the police that he found the gun at Little Tokyo.

In court yesterday, Arthur Williams, appearing on Providence’s behalf, told the court that his client was in the process of turning in the gun to the police when he was intercepted.

Williams said his client had no intentions for the gun and had it reached in the hands of somebody else, it may have been used for destructive purposes.

“He is a young chap and the three days he had over there (prison), he sees that it is not a place to be,” Williams submitted.

In response, senior prosecutor Adolphus Delpesche said while the defendant claimed to have been carrying the weapon to the police, he had ample to time to do so before going to the wharf to board a ferry. In the circumstances, Delpesche suggested that a custodial sentence of two to three years be imposed.

Chief magistrate Browne-Matthias, in handing down her sentence, told Providence the matter was serious and stated that she took into consideration his guilty plea and age.

However, she chided him for being disrespectful to his counsel when he first appeared in court last Thursday.

“You have been downright disrespectful. You also misled the court and you passed so many checkpoints. Police were everywhere and you still walked to the wharf?,” the chief magistrate said, adding that it was because of Williams’ intervention why she did not sentence Providence to five years in jail.(KW)