Former footballer jailed for 39 years

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A sentence of 39 years in prison has been imposed on former national footballer Errol “Errie” Barnes who murdered his 19-year-old ex-girlfriend and mother of his child in a jealous rage almost five years ago.
It wasn’t the sentence Patrice Henry believed would have sufficed in exchange for the life of her daughter, Melissa Rose, who Barnes gunned down outside her John Hughes home just weeks after she separated from him.
Moments before Justice Iain Morley handed down the sentence, Henry was called upon to openly address the court. She described Barnes as a “waste” and lamented that he has never contributed to the life of the child who was just over a year old when her mother was killed.
Henry said she wished the death penalty could have been imposed, but added that in the absence of that, she wanted Barnes jailed for 35 years to life.
Once the woman had vented, Justice Morley turned to Barnes “Stand up please. For the premeditated, planned murder by firearm of Melissa Rose on September 5, 2012 travelling to the scene in a hire car to confuse investigation, the sentence of this court is 39 years imprisonment.”
The judge said the minimum calculated term for such an offence in the UK would have been 35 years but, given that prison conditions in Antigua & Barbuda are much harsher, he reduced the minimum time to be spent to 26 years, but it has to be earned through conduct.
(More in today’s Daily Observer)

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