By Latrishka Thomas
Three years’ probation, with the caveat that he will be imprisoned for six months for any violations, is the penalty that a 19-year-old sex offender is facing.
After four hours of deliberation in early November, seven of the nine jurors who sat through the teenager’s trial found him guilty of serious indecency involving his then seven-year-old-cousin.
The jury was of the belief that two years ago, the then 17-year-old youth forced the minor to perform a sex act on him while they were at home alone.
He attempted to convince the child to commit the act by promising to allow her to use his cellular phone.
When she refused, the act was done forcibly.
The teenager, who stood trial in the High Court for over a week in November, was represented by attorney Wendel Robinson.
The defendant denied the allegation when he gave sworn evidence.
Nevertheless, most of the jurors believed that he was guilty.
Yesterday, Robinson pleaded with Justice Ann-Marie Smith to “temper justice with mercy”.
He said that he believes probation would be a fitting sentence for several reasons to include the fact that the convict is currently employed and supports his mother, and had already spent a year in Her Majesty’s Prison.
“He would have given his pound of flesh,” the attorney stated.
The judge then placed the youngster on three years’ probation, within which time he must undergo counselling for sex offenders and take remedial Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) classes.
He was asked to return to court on June 30 so that the court can ensure that its orders are being complied with.
Meanwhile, two friends accused of taking turns having sexual intercourse with a 15-year-old will enter pleas on January 25.
The offence is said to have occurred in 2019 when both defendants were 16 years of age.