Court strikes out one theft charge against a police officer
Whether it be lack of evidence or disinterest in the case, the failure of police officers to appear in court and provide evidence has led to another office being vindicated of one of two theft charges.
Chris Defoe who in July 2019 had just under ten years of service in the Commonwealth of Dominica Police Force was charged with theft of a bulletproof vest.
He appeared before a Roseau Magistrate where the charge read to him claimed that between May 1 and December 5, 2017, Defoe stole a bulletproof vest at Police Headquarters valued at EC$500.
He was not required to enter a plea in the matter because it has passed the six months' limit and so it was laid indictable.
At the Preliminary Inquiry (PI) on June 15, 2021, the presiding Magistrate raised concern over the fact that the case was nearly two years old and no progress was made.
The prosecution witnesses, though warned and summoned, failed to appear in court despite many adjournments.
Having taken these factors into consideration, the matter was struck for "want of prosecution."
Defoe, however, still stands charged for allegedly stealing a motor vehicle in 2020 belonging to Lyra Humphrey of Portsmouth valued at EC$23,000.
Since the matter is indictable, the accused was not required to enter a plea as the case is expected to be heard at the High Court of Justice before a Judge and jury.
The case is currently in the PI stage at the court and Defoe is represented by Attorney-at-Law Dawn Yearwood Stewart.