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Lawyer Opines that Laddie's Killer be Prosecuted for Murder #552116
08/18/21 04:51 AM
08/18/21 04:51 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 81,141
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

.
Marty  Offline OP
"Laddie Gillett - Specific Intention to Kill"

FORMER PROSECUTOR OPINES THAT THAT POLICE OFFICER THAT KILLED LADDIE GILLETT SHOULD HAVE BEEN CHARGED FOR MURDER

Below is that opinion:

Laddie Gillett: Was there a specific intention to kill?

The Facts.

On the 14th of July 2021, at about 9;30 pm, Laddie Gillett and Thomas Palacio were eating cake and having fun on the beach in Placencia. Two men in black approached the two young boys who understandably ran the opposite direction. One of the men, without warning, fired a shot towards the young boys which caught Laddie Gillett. Laddie Gillett died several minutes later.

It was later determined that it was Police Corporal Kareem Martinez that shot and killed Laddie Gillett. He has been charged for manslaughter.

Is there a case for Murder?

Manslaughter is a lesser charge for murder. It can be basically described as “I had the intention to hurt you but not kill you.” Murder, on the other hand, the accused must have the specific intention to kill. The specific intention can be formed in seconds, it can be direct and indirect. Direct, “Bway, I wah kill you!!” and you proceed to shoot the person and he dies. Indirect, the person does an act and in acting so realized that one possible outcome is death, that is, death was foreseen from which it can be inferred that death was intended.

Was there a specific intention?

As stated, the specific intention to kill can be formed in a matter of seconds. As such, it does not necessarily need to be a long thought-out process. Once it was the intention to kill the deceased when the harm was inflicted. To explore whether Cpl. Kareem Martinez had the intention to kill Laddie Gillett, two Belizean cases will be explored.: Criminal Appeal No 3. Of 2007 Micheal Faux v The Queen and The Supreme Court of Belize C3/2014 The Queen v Donovan Casildo and Brian Clark.

Micheal Fuax v The Queen

In the Court of Appeal case No 2. Of 2007 Micheal Faux v R Justice Morrison referring to the evidence of the trial in the Supreme Court of Belize noted that the appellant was convicted for murder. The prosecution relied on the evidence of Mr. Hemmans. Mr. Hemmans testified that the accused (Michael Faux), stood up in the middle of a canal, about 300 feet from the deceased (Mr. Bradley) and fired four to five shots in his direction. At that time, he was accompanied by Mr. Bradley and three other persons.

One of those shots caught Mr. Bradley which resulted in his death. Counsel for the Appellant (Michael Faux) submitted that the evidence of Mr. Hemmans was insufficient to establish the specific intent needed to ground a charge of murder and that in the circumstances the learned trial judge ought to have left a verdict of manslaughter to the jury. The Justices of the Court of Appeal disagreed and held at paragraph 30 “The evidence of Mr. Hemmans was that the appellant “stand up middle of the canal side … pulled out a gun and fired four to five shots towards our direction.” In our view, this evidence was sufficient to establish, if believed, a specific intention to kill and there was no basis for the judge to have left to the jury the alternative verdict of manslaughter.”

The Queen v Donovan Casildo and Brian Clark

On December 23, 2011 at about 11:00pm two persons, Donovan Casildo and Brian Clark broke into the Robert’s Residence in Santa Elena Town, Cayo District. The noise of the living room window breaking woke up Diana Roberts and her husband, Sylvan Roberts. Sylvan Roberts got up and went into the living room. Shortly after two gunshots were fired, one of those shots caught Mr. Roberts in his stomach causing him to collapse on the sofa.

The two men, Casildo and Clark, proceeded to the room of Mrs. Roberts and demanded money and jewelry. The proceeded to rob the Roberts of all the money they had, $94 dollars. At trial it was argued by the Defendants, Casildo and Clark, that at all material time it was only their intention to rob and not kill Mr. Roberts.

The Prosecution argued, however, that Casildo and Clark had the specific intention to kill and that intention was formed the very second the first shot was fired. The Prosecution argued that firing two gunshots at such close range was sufficient to establish a specific intention to kill. More importantly, as highlighted by, Justice Moore, the trial judge, the fact that after shooting Mr. Roberts, Casildo and Clark continued to rob the Roberts. Essentially, leaving Mr. Roberts to die established that there was a specific intention to kill. The prosecution further argued that there was a plethora of options available to the Casildo and Clark after entering the house. However, one of the accused person (Casildo or Clark) chose to fire a shot toward Mr. Roberts. Thereafter, they both proceeded to rob the Roberts. The Prosecution further argued that it was immaterial who fired the shot, the mere fact that both Casildo and Clark continued to rob the Roberts established that it was a joint enterprise and both should be guilty of murder. Justice Moore agreed and both Donovan Casildo and Brian Clark were found guilty of murder.

In short, the close proximity, between the shooter (Casildo or Clark) and the Mr. Roberts when the shot was fired coupled with the fact that they continued with their enterprise of robbing the Roberts leaving Mr. Roberts to die was sufficient evidence to find a specific intention to kill.

The Evidence against CPl. Kareem Martinez

Admittedly, I do not know what evidence the police have gathered so far. However, if the police would do their duty properly and the main witness, Thomas Palacio cooperates. The evidence based on Thomas Palacio’s Instagram post would be as follows:

“The cops and security intercepted us as we were heading back to Chabil Mar resort. The men who caused us to run were dressed in all black, and they didn’t shout ‘police, or security,’ so we took that as a red flag and as someone who wanted to rob or hurt us, so we ran the opposite way. I was instantly hit with a baton on my back and then one shot was fired. Laddie fell instantly”

“I fell to my knees when I heard the shot, then I was kicked up, hit several times, and held at gunpoint as these dirty cops stood over me while I was on my back. Laddie was less than 20 feet away from me. Not moving at all. They checked his pulse right there, and then they all agreed that ‘bwai di man gaan’, “di man get shot bwai’. They then returned their focus on me saying ‘weh we a do with he now’ as the gun hovered inches above my face, they then kicked me up again and roughed me up. I asked if Laddie was alright, and nobody gave me a direct answer, just ‘shet up lee bwai’ and stuff like that”

“They had us there for at least 10 minutes. Laddie was left there for 10 minutes. Before they even bothered to start doing anything ‘right’.”

Therefore, based on the eye witness account of Thomas Palacio:

1. I was hit with a boton,

2. Shot was fired.

3. Laddie was less than 20 feet away.

The above elements establishes that the shot was fired in CLOSE PROXIMITY similar or much closer than in the Michael Faux case. Admittedly, there were more than one shot fired in both the Michael Faux and Donvan and Casildo case but it can be argued, that in this instance, the shot was fired in such close proximity, less than 50 feet, that there was no need to fire more than one shot. Further, as stated by Thomas Palacio “Laddie Fell instantly”.

Importantly, what occurred after the shot was fired reinforce that the officer, Kareem Martinez, had formed the specific intention to kill the moment he fired the shot. In the words of Thomas Palacio:

1. I fell to my knees when I heard the shot, then I was kicked up, hit several times, and held at gunpoint as these dirty cops stood over me while I was on my back. 2. bwai di man gaan’, “di man get shot bwai’. They then returned their focus on me saying ‘weh we a do with he now’ as the gun hovered inches above my face, they then kicked me up again and roughed me up.

3. They had us there for at least 10 minutes. Laddie was left there for 10 minutes. Before they even bothered to start doing anything ‘right’.”

This is in my view is the nail in the coffin for the charge of murder against Cpl. Kareem Martinez. And I go further and dare say, that the other person (police officer or security) who the police have refused to mention by name, may also be charged with murder as a joint enterprise.

Further, and final, there were a plethora of options available to the Cpl. Kareem Martinez before firing the shot…

1. Run and give chase.

2. Fire a warning shot in the air.

3. Shout and identify themselves as police officers.

4. Proceed in the direction and call for backup.

5. Do nothing.

Instead, Cpl. Kareem Martinez chose to shoot Laddie Gillett, a 14-year-old, who was eating cake on the beach in his back.

Conclusion

There is evidence to suggest that Cpl. Kareem Martinez had formed the specific intention to kill Laddie Gillett. As such, there may be enough evidence to procure a charge for murder against Cpl. Kareem Martinez. The following questions remains:

1. Can the police police themselves?

2. Do they have the will power to charge one of their own for murder?

3. Does the public really want justice, that is, have those persons at the scene of the crime given evidence?

Ends

Re: Lawyer Opines that Laddie's Killer be Prosecuted for Murder [Re: Marty] #552117
08/18/21 04:54 AM
08/18/21 04:54 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 81,141
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

.
Marty  Offline OP

Compol Criticises Legal Opinion

In other news now...

A lawyer - who has remained anonymous - has circulated a legal opinion making the case that Corporal Kareem Martinez - who killed Laddie Gillett - should be charged for murder.

The opinion is titled, "Laddie Gillett - Specific Intention to Kill" - and it cites legal precendee to argue that there is enough evidence ti charge the corporal for the murder of the teenager.

As is well known, the Corporal was charged for manslaughter and is out on bail.

Not surprisingly, the commissioner was not impressed with the legal opinion by one of his colleagues. He says that person must not have ever gone to law school:

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police
"I have seen that document indeed and let me say, as a lawyer, I don't believe that document was written by one of my colleagues. If it is, then that colleague needs to go back to law school. It is not even as good as what paralegal would do. Maybe the person is a former prosecutor, but is not an attorney, because you'd know that we do have lay prosecutors who have paralegal and prosecuting in our magistrate's courts. That's the farthest I would say that person qualification is, a paralegal, it cannot be an attorney."

Reporter
"If you fire a shot at someone less than fifty feet away, pointing at them and not shooting it a warning shot style, do you not have intent to kill?"

Chester Williams
"It depends on where you aim. If you aim for a person head and you catch that person in the head, one would say that the probability of shooting someone in the head, and that person survives is very slim. So if it can be proven that he shot the person in the head then it can be said that there was a clear intent to kill. If you could have said that he intentionally shot the person in the left chest region, then can say intent to kill or if a person fires multiple shot, but to fire one shot, a police officer on duty firing one shot at a person who may be running, it is difficult to prove an intent to kill. I'm not saying that it is not possible, but it is difficult to prove that."

Channel 7


ComPol Debunks “Legal Opinion” on Corporal Martinez Intent

A document circulating on social media claiming to be a legal opinion from a former prosecutor argues that there is a case for Corporal Kareem Martinez to be charged for murder. Corporal Martinez, as we have reported, stands accused of killing fourteen year old Laddie Gillett on a beach in Placencia with his service issued weapon while on duty a few weeks ago.  While the social media post is anonymous, its author claims that Martinez’s decision to fire from close proximity is an indication of intent to kill.  He or she further states that what occurred after the shot was fired reinforces that Martinez had formed the specific intention to kill the moment he fired the shot. Commissioner of Police Chester Williams responded to the anonymous post.

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police

“As a lawyer, I don’t believe that document was written by one of my colleagues. If it is, then that colleague needs to go back to law school. It is not even as good as what paralegal would do. Because, the truth of the matter is, one of the cases that the person used in the argument s the case against Michael Fox, when he shot and killed I think the guy Bradley on a bridge near East Collet Canal. Now, if you look at the circumstances or the facts in that case were, the evidence given by the witness in that case was that Michael Fox went in that area, stooped down, waited for the victim to come, and fired four to five shots at the victim, hitting and killing him. Now, you can clearly distinguish that case from what happened in the Martinez case. In the case with Martinez, he was a police officer on duty responding to a call from a member of the public. He fired one shot, not multiple, one shot. And, unfortunately that shot caught and killed the young man. Now, how can you compare those two cases? Even if it were that in that case Michael Fox had not caught the deceased and just fired five shots, the fact that he fired five shots would have indicate intent to kill. But, when you just fire one shot, the gun that you have carries fifteen rounds, and you fire one, how can you arrive at intent to kill?”

Reporter

“If you fire a shot at someone less than fifty feet away, pointing at them and not shooting it a warning shot style, do you not have intent to kill?”

Chester Williams

“It depends on where you aim. If you aim for a person head and you catch that person in the head, one would say that the probability of shooting someone in the head, and that person survives is very slim. So if it can be proven that he shot the person in the head then it can be said that there was a clear intent to kill.”

Channel 5



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