Man admits to unlawful confinement of 12-year-old girl

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By Latrishka Thomas

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A man could spend several years behind bars after he admitted to unlawfully confining a 12-year-old girl.

Duffield Destin appeared before Justice Ann-Marie Smith last Friday, where he pleaded guilty to the serious offence, which carries a maximum penalty of seven years’ imprisonment.

The incident unfolded on October 12 2021, when a woman arranged for her 12-year-old daughter to spend time with her sister.

The minor was walking from her Golden Grove home to meet her aunt when it began to rain. Seeking shelter, she entered a shop. Inside, she noticed her aunt’s car passing by. When the rain stopped, she waited outside the shop, hoping that her aunt would return. When her aunt did not appear, she began walking back home.

On her way, she noticed a car parked on the side of the road with its engine running. As she walked past, the defendant, who was 42 at the time, grabbed her by the throat, threatening to harm her if she disclosed the incident to anyone. He tried to force her into the car, and although she struggled and resisted, she was unable to free herself.

She managed to partially escape by opening the car door, but he held onto her. A passerby noticed the girl’s feet hanging out of the car, saw the struggle and approached the vehicle. When he got close, he heard the girl’s cries for help and saw the defendant holding her hand and apparently thumping her.

When questioned, Destin claimed the girl had run away from home, and he was taking her back.

The child continued to plead for help, and the passerby intervened, freeing her from the defendant’s grasp. The accused then threatened the man before speeding away in his car.

The girl quickly ran home and shared the incident with her mother, who had been searching for her.

The police were contacted, and with the assistance of surveillance footage and the Good Samaritan, they located the defendant.

Destin, after being arraigned in the High Court last Friday, explained that the ordeal was not premeditated but the result of his frustration while looking for someone who owed him money.

He had previously told the police that he had been searching for months for a man that owed him $10,000 and decided to scope out a place owned by the man’s family.

He claimed he didn’t know if the girl was related to the person he was searching for.

The accused will be sentenced on October 27, with the court considering the severity of his actions.

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