Rolando “Street Law “ Samuel
News
January 24, 2023
‘Street Law’ found not guilty of breaching curfew

A man who appears to have multiple homes where he sleeps was found not guilty of breaching a curfew order when he appeared in court yesterday, January 23.

It was not the first time that Rolando “Street Law “ Samuel was slapped with a curfew.

Samuel appeared in the serious offences court on November 30, 2022 where he faced seven indictable charges in relation to a shooting incident that occurred in Byrea on November 27.

Chief magistrate, Rechanne Browne granted bail him in the sum of $20,000 and Samuel was required to submit all travel documents, report to the Rose Hall police station twice per week, and observe a daily 7:00 p.m to 6:00 a.m curfew.Stop notices were also placed at all ports of exit and entry.

The 36 year old labourer of Troumaca and Chester Cottage breached that curfew; he was met at a bar during curfew hours on December 20, last year.

Samuel appeared in the Kingstown magistrate court before senior magistrate,Rickie Burnett, to answer the charge where he pleaded guilty. He was fined a total of $1,500.00.

On January 11, 2023, Samuel was once again charged for wilfully disobeying a curfew ordered by the chief magistrate after police officers said that they met him outside a home at Chester Cottage after 8:00 p.m, socialising.

Samuel pleaded not guilty to the charge and the matter went to trial on January 20.

The court heard evidence from the defendant, sergeant Malcolm Alexander; detective corporal 339 Laborde; and Brently Adams, a witness for the defendant.

According to the evidence given by the police officers, the defendant was met in the yard of a home leaning on the porch wall and pouring a drink. He was informed that he is being arrested for breaching curfew orders and said “big man ah yah me live from since the last time me get charge.”

Both officers told the court that the defendant does not live at the home where he was met; he lives at a house about 200 feet from where they met him.

However, the defendant told the court that he lives at the home where he was met, as well as at another home close by. He said he sleeps back and forth between the houses. On the night he was arrested, he said that he was on his porch wall sitting and drinking some orange juice at the time, when he was approached by police officers.

Prosecutor, Corlene Samuel asked the defendant if he was drinking alcohol, but he denied doing so.

However, when his witness took the stand the witness informed the court that they were drinking Campari and the defendant was consuming that drink as well.

The prosecutor told the court that the defendant was arrested and taken to the serious offences court where he was granted bail. She said in his presence, and based on the information given,he was ordered to report to the Rose Hall police station.

The prosecutor added that, from the information the court received the defendant was living in Troumaca and was ordered to report twice per week to the Rose Hall police station.

She said that on the night when Samuel was arrested the police indicated that they received a call from persons in the area stating that the defendant was not at his home.

Furthermore, she said when the police met him initially in connection with his first charges, he took them to his place of residence and that was at a different house.

The prosecutor said at no point did the defendant tell the police officers that he was also living at the house where he was met, as it relates to his latest charge.

Samuel added that the police officers met him leaning over a porch and drinking alcohol, according to his friend who testified.

However, she noted that the defendant said there was no alcohol there.

The prosecutor added that it is the obligation of the offender to remain at the specified place for a period specified with the order. She said that what was specified to the court was that the defendant was living in Troumaca, and when he was met he was not at the place where the order was made, neither was he met where he had informed the police that he was living.

The prosecutor added that when a person is on curfew they should be in their home and not having a jolly time with friends. As a result, the prosecution came to the conclusion that the defendant breached the order of the court, and the court should find him guilty.

On Monday, January 23, senior magistrate, Rickie Burnett found the defendant not guilty of breaching the court’s orders.

The senior magistrate said that the document which was sent to the court did not specify where the defendant should be.

“It was extremely vague” he said.

He noted that when a court is faced with such a scenario it will have difficulties convicting the defendant. Burnett said the defendant was not found at a public place; Samuel was found at a place where he is living. He added that he is unable to convict the defendant given the evidence that was presented, and as a result he found the defendant not guilty of the offence.