Home intruder denied leniency for undressing woman while she slept
Shawn Tannis
From the Courts, News
March 28, 2024
Home intruder denied leniency for undressing woman while she slept

A man who illegally entered a couple’s home and undressed a woman while she was asleep with her boyfriend was denied the non-custodial sentence he pleaded with the court to give him as he apologised for his actions.

Instead, the court handed down a 18-month sentence on Shawn Tannis of Redemption Sharpes.

Tannis appeared at the Kingstown Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday March, 19, 2024, where he pleaded guilty to burglary. The facts stated that on March 14, 2024, at Green Hill at about 2:00 a.m, the virtual complainant was inside her bedroom sleeping with her boyfriend when she felt Tannis removing her underwear and floral short, cloth pants.

Tannis then held her by the waist and pulled her to the end of the mattress which was on the floor. The woman assumed it was her boyfriend as that is their norm whenever they are having sex.

She also did not hear any doors or windows being opened, which caused her to not grow suspicious. About 10 seconds later, she heard her boyfriend saying “way happening here?” She looked around, and saw a man behind her pulling up his pants.

She immediately sprang up, ran to the other side of the bed and began to scream. Her boyfriend grabbed the man by his neck and asked him what he was doing in their home. Tannis told him that the virtual complainant invited him inside; but she denied this allegation.

Tannis made several attempts to run, but the virtual complainant’s boyfriend held a knife by his neck and asked her to telephone the police which she immediately did. A party of officers at the Criminal Investigation Department(CID), including PC 871 Davis, were dispatched to the virtual complainant’s home.

On arrival, the woman’s boyfriend handed over one pair of black Adidas sneakers; one pair of sunglasses; and one pink iPhone to Cpl Davis. Tannis, who had what appeared to be a swollen right eye, injuries about his body, and blood running down his face, was also handed over to the police.

Cpl Davis identified himself to Tannis as a police officer and informed him of the report that was made against him. Tannis was later cautioned and stated “Officer me and the girl bin in the porch ah sex and she carried me in the bedroom to continue sex.” The officer kept the items handed over to him as possible exhibits.

Tannis was later taken to the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital where he was treated and discharged the same day. Later that day, the virtual complainant arrived at the station and a written statement was recorded from her.

PC Lewis carried out investigations into the matter and recorded witness statements. On Friday March 15,2024, at about 6:35 p.m, PC Lewis met Tannis at the CID, and identified herself to him as a police officer.

She cautioned and interviewed Tannis in the presence of another officer.

He volunteered a statement admitting to the offence. The items that were handed over by the virtual complainant’s boyfriend were shown to Tannis, and he identified them to be his property. They were kept as exhibits. He was then charged for burglary.

After the facts were read, the virtual complainant told the court that she is still “shaken up a little” by the incident.

However, Tannis said that he would like to apologise to the virtual complainant saying that he was intoxicated when he committed the offence, adding that it was “just a mistake” and that he acted out of character.

He then asked the court to impose a non-custodial sentence on him for the offence.

Prosecutor, Corlene Samuel objected pointing out that the crime of burglary is prevalent in the country, and describing Tannis’ actions as “sick and sad.”

She argued that one ought to feel secure in their home, but Tannis violated that right.

Senior Magistrate, Colin John agreed with Samuel, and sentenced Tannis to 18 months in prison.