From the Courts
February 27, 2018
Breaking and entering duo to learn fate today

One mother cried in court last week as her son faces the possibility of jail at 16 years old, saying, “It hurts my heart to know that my son would do this.”

Anthony Hope, a teenager of Belair, was born in this century, March 9, 2001. He attended the West St George Secondary School until recently, but was taken out of school by his parents when he was apparently stabbed from behind by another boy. His mother said he was unable to get into another school last September, as they were full.

His partner in crime, Jerroy Phillips, is 21 years old and resides at Redemption Sharpes. He attended the Buccament Bay Secondary School, but dropped out when he reached Form 3, because, he says, he was sending himself to school. He decided to take up fishing and says that that is what he has been doing since 2015.

Both were charged that on February 18 they entered the building of St Hill Insurance Ltd on Grenville Street as trespassers and damaged one gate, three commercial glass and aluminum doors, surveillance cameras, one show window and five padlocks.

The police were acting on a telephone tip-off on Sunday at 3 in the morning, when they proceeded to the building where the insurance company is located.

Upon arriving, the police said they noticed the door on the upper floor of the building was open and their suspicion was further aroused. They cautiously entered the building and went to the upper floor, where they found the two men in a seated position on the veranda, with knapsacks beside them. One knapsack contained tools and the other dark coloured clothing. The security cameras were later reviewed and showed the two men breaking into the building.

All that was left for the two who had pleaded guilty to do was to be sentenced, but senior magistrate Rickie Burnett wanted to speak to parents and a representative from St Hill Insurance Ltd first.

“Look at the type of crime that your son has committed at age 16,” Burnett told Hope’s mother. “Both of them sat together, and planned this thing….The mind or minds of a seasoned criminal,” he continued.

“The evening before the incident, I hugged my son, and I had this feeling, but he left in a split second and it hurts my heart to know that my son would do this,” Hope’s mother explained to the magistrate, her speech breaking as she held her head and cried. Not the only one in the courtroom crying, another woman, presumambly another relative of Hope, was also crying in the back.

“That’s the nature of life. He was brought into the world by you, but he has his own mind,” Burnett told her.

Roxanne MacLeish, from St Hill Insurance Ltd, said she was only concerned about the cost of the damage to the building.

“They’ve embarrassed and depressed their parents,” Burnett stated, and commented that the crime was so grave that it caused him to go and read the sentencing guidelines again.

With a sigh, the magistrate admitted to needing some time to think about the sentence for the two young men.

They were remanded until February 27, and Burnett stated that by that time he would know what he is going to do with both of them.

Hope’s mother cried until court was adjourned.(KR)