Left to right: Lewis, late girlfriend Riviere and Judge Adrian- Roberts
Left to right: Lewis, late girlfriend Riviere and Judge Adrian- Roberts

Trial judge Justice Wynante Adrien-Roberts on Friday, February 25, 2022, via zoom sentenced 33-year old Rodman Moses Lewis to 18 years, eight months, two weeks in prison for the murder, in 2015, of his former girlfriend Triscia Riviere.

A jury of five men and four women found Lewis of Goodwill guilty of murdering Riviere, 26, the mother of their son on Thursday, November 13, 2020, after a 28-day trial which began on Monday, October 5, 2020, at the Roseau High Court.

The State represented by current Ag Director of Public Prosecutions Sherma Dalrymple and State Attorney Daina Matthew called 22 witnesses to present the state's case. Attorney Anthony Commodore conducted the defence.

The state's case was that Rodman Moses Lewis floored Triscia Riviere with a kick and repeatedly stomped her head while she lay on the floor in her kitchen at Stock Farm on the evening of Tuesday, November 3, 2015. He also used a 20lb gas cylinder on the helpless woman, according to evidence given in the court during the trial.

Rodman and Triscia had been in a relationship for nine years before the deceased called quits on the relationship.

The jury took less than two hours to arrive at their verdict. The State said it would be seeking the death penalty.

The judge scheduled sentencing for Monday, February 1, 2021. But a delayed psychiatric report and the worsening of the coronavirus pandemic put the whole court system on hold.

Justice Adrien-Roberts began by noting the four cardinal objectives of sentencing which are: retribution, deterrence, prevention, and rehabilitation. She added that any person convicted of murder will face the sentence of death, which is the maximum sentence set by the state. But several steps would have to be pursued to determine the appropriate sentence for each case.

One of those factors was the seriousness of the case so that there could be the next level of the sentence which was whole life in prison, determinate sentence which would be lesser than whole life, and there was at the court's pleasure in the case of someone suffering mental illness.

After detailing the factors that would merit the death sentence and whole life sentence (up to 40-50 years) which are cases that would be among the rarest of the rare, or the worst of the worse, Justice Adrien-Roberts said she would not consider the death sentence, and whole life sentence.

Another category of lesser than the worst-case scenario was the person making use of a bladed weapon or blunt object taken to the scene with a starting point of 30 years with a range of 20-40 years. The judge settled on 25 years, the range being 15-25 years and a starting point of 22 years.

Looking at the aggravating and mitigating factors, the judge described the circumstances as brutal, depraved, and heinous with no mitigating factor. She thus added three years to the 22.

The aggravating and mitigating factors of the offender indicated that Lewis showed little or no remorse. He was a prison officer which meant he was part of the law enforcement establishment for which she added one year to reach 26 years imprisonment. On the mitigation side, he had no previous convictions, the father of a nine-year-old son, and according to the mother of the deceased, was not known to be violent. One year was thus deducted.

Lewis' incarceration was six years, three months, and two weeks for a total of 2,300 days and on remand for which he would get full credit thus reducing the 25 years to 18 years, eight months, and two weeks.

"Mr. Rodman Lewis, for the murder of Triscia Riviere on Tuesday, November 3, 2015, at Stock Farm, I sentence you to 18 years, 8 months, 2 weeks' imprisonment," intoned Justice Adrien Roberts shortly after 11:35 am.