Magistrate gives young thief a second chance
From the Courts, News
May 12, 2023
Magistrate gives young thief a second chance

A thief who stole a book bag containing cash and other valuables walked out of the Serious Offences Court a lucky man on May 11, after he was dismissed from his charge.

The 24 year old first time offender will therefore not go down in the records as having a conviction after he was given a second chance by Chief Magistrate Rechanne Browne. The young man, whose name is being with held was taken to court for stealing a book bag with its contents belonging to educator, Chester Morgan of Layou.

The man pleaded guilty to a charge that on May 8, at Kingstown he stole one navy blue Mac Book Apple Laptop valued at EC$4,500.00; one St Vincent and the Grenadines National ID Card valued at EC $100.00; one brown Bucket Hat valued at EC $20.00; one black Nike book bag values US$40.00; one black Toshiba hard drive valued at US $30.00; one grey laptop pouch valued at US $35.00; one transparent laptop case valued at US $60.00; and EC $5,400.00 in cash; a total value of EC $10,020.00 and US$165.00; along with one St Vincent and the Grenadines passport with a value of EC$280.00, the property of the government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

According to the facts presented by Prosecutor Corporal Delando Charles, the complainant secured and parked his motor vehicle in the vicinity of the Kingstown cemetery at approximately 5:50 p.m on the date in question. When he returned to the vehicle later that evening, he discovered that the window behind the driver’s seat was open.

He made checks and discovered that his book bag with its contents was missing. As a result, Morgan reported the matter to the police and investigations were carried out.

During a stop and search carried out by the police, the defendant was seen in a motor vehicle and the officers requested a search of the occupants. When the defendant was searched the book bag containing the missing items was recovered. He was arrested on suspicion and was later charged for the offence of theft.

Before the defendant was sentenced, the complainant was summoned to appear in court after the youngster claimed that all of the items, including the cash, were recovered, and the complainant wished not to proceed with the matter. However, the court heard that not all of the stolen money was recovered; as a result, the Magistrate summoned the complainant.

When Morgan took the stand, he told the court that he wished to “forget” about the incident explaining that he retrieved his laptop which was the most important thing.

He also asked the court to be lenient with the young offender, suggesting that a bond be imposed as he felt the young man was in need of help and he didn’t believe in crucifying him.

The magistrate told Morgan that she had no intention of sending him to prison because he has no previous convictions, and the items were recovered.

However, she noted her concerns that some of the stolen money was still outstanding and said that her intention in sentencing was to restore persons to the position they were previously in.

Morgan told the court that if the young man has to return the remaining money he may end up doing worse. He, however asked the court that the youngster have no contact with him.

The Magistrate applied Section 37 (1) of the Criminal Code and she dismissed the charge against the defendant. She advised him not to repeat his actions as she noted that he may not get away.

In addition, Browne encouraged the young man to enrol in available training courses so he can learn something new and make good of himself.

She also told him that what he does not like for himself, he should not do to others and she warned him to never come back before the court over any offence.