Two men have been charged with GBH and stabbing. By Ronalda Luke
A drunken night at Wesley has landed Brundelah Bright Bougouneau on remand at the Dominica State Prison on a Grievous Bodily Harm (GBH) charge.
According to the charge of the police, Bougouneau of Poorman's Corner, Wesley, on June 17, 2023, at Central Square, Wesley unlawfully and maliciously wounded Patrick Odiamar Jr Honore with the intent to cause him GBH.
Information from the police is that, on the previous night, the men were at a bar drinking when Bougouneau, who was under the influence of alcohol and Honore started to argue.
During the argument, the accused allegedly pulled out a kitchen knife he had purchased and stabbed Honore multiple times causing severe injury to his abdomen.
At his court appearance, the Wesley man, who was unrepresented, was not required to enter a plea since the matter is an indictable offence, expected to be tried at the High Court before a Judge and jury.
When the issue of bail arose, the prosecution had no objection but requested that such be granted with proper surety. Bougouneau could not present a suitable surety to the court hence presiding Magistrate Michael Laudat remanded him into custody until such time.
His matter was adjourned to September 22, 2023, at the Wesley Magistrate court. Meanwhile, a Pichelin man, Akan Thomas, is on $30,000 bail for allegedly stabbing Sherquan Jno Baptiste, also of Pichelin, to the right forearm and side of his face.
The indictable charge of the police is that, on June 20, 2023, at Pichelin, Thomas unlawfully and maliciously wound Jno Baptiste with intent to cause him GBH. Information from the police is that on June 18, 2023, Thomas alleges that Jno Baptiste damaged his vehicle.
The accused is said to have searched for the complaint he met on June 20, 2023. During an argument between the men, Thomas is said to have inflicted stab wounds to the right side of Jno Baptiste's face and right forearm.
When Thomas appeared before Magistrate Laudat, his attorney Julien Prevost put forward a bail application that Laudat granted.
As part of his bail conditions, the accused man is to report to the Grand Bay Police Station every Monday between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., must not interfere with the complainant in the matter of any of the prosecution's witnesses and must be on good behaviour and not re-offend whilst on bail.
Thomas will return to the Grand Bay Magistrate's Court on September 11, 2023.
Bail denied to Mahaut man and woman charged in connection to an attempted robbery at NP gas station
Magistrate Michael Laudat contends that it is not in the public's interest to grant bail to Murphy Valarie and Taska Joseph, charged with an attempted robbery at the National Petroleum service station in Canefield.
The male and female of Curry Rest Road, Mahaut, are accused of assaulting Simon Gage in an attempt to rob him on June 12, 2023, at Canefield.
At their court appearance, the accused individuals were not required to enter a plea since the matter is an indictable offence, expected to be tried at the High Court before a Judge and jury.
At the hearing, police prosecutor Inspector Francis Laville objected to bail according to sections 7:1 (e), 7:2 (c) and (e) of the Bail Act.
He told the court the police are in pursuit of other individuals in connection to this matter and an alleged firearm used during the commissioning of the offence. According to Laville, the prosecution fears that should Valarie and Joseph be released on bail, they will interfere with ongoing investigations.
Laville added that it is not in the public's interest to grant bail to the pair and asked the court to take judicial notice of the public outcry for the increase in firearm-related offences.
However, attorney-at-law Wayne Norde and defence attorney Dawn Yearwood-Stewart who represents Valarie dubbed the prosecution's objection "empty, weak, vague and baseless."
Norde told the presiding Magistrate that the request of Inspector Laville to detain "innocent" people while the police continue their investigation would not serve in the interest of justice for the accused.
"The golden rule is that the police investigate then arrest, and it should not be the other way around," Norde declared. "This offence occurred seven days ago, and the prosecution says the defendant will interfere with potential witnesses; based on the passage of time, I don't see how this will occur if they are granted bail."
The defence attorney added the element of the public's interest does not apply in this case because, although the charges are serious, the alleged incident attracted no public attention.
Should his client be released, Norde said, Valarie has a fixed place of abode, is employed, will attend court at every adjourned date and will abide by any bail condition set by the court.
The attorney called the Investigating Officer as a witness during his bail application. Following a series of questions, Constable Titre stated that the police have in their possession video footage of the alleged crime and support the prosecution's objection to bail as, according to him, the accused individual will apprise other suspects of the evidence that the police contain.
Titre further noted that the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) requests an additional two weeks to complete its investigation.
Following the bail application by the defence, Magistrate Laudat remanded Valarie and Joseph into custody pending his written decision on June 20, 2023.
The following day, when the accused man and woman appeared in court, Laudat said, the court was not inclined to grant bail to the pair.
He said that it was not in the public's interest for Valarie and Joseph to be released, and he would grant the police request for more time to complete their investigation.
The matter was adjourned to October 10, 2023, for the start of the Preliminary Inquiry.