After hearing arguments by Defence Lawyers, City Magistrate Ann Mc Lennan last Thursday ruled that there was insufficient evidence for policemen – Sheldon Williams and Errol Williams- to face trial by a judge and jury.
Alliance For Change (AFC) Executive Member, Cathy Hughes said based on what transpired at the Preliminary Inquiry, the court found that neither of the two policemen had fired the bullet that struck Belgrave to his chest on October 5,2012.
Belgrave’s mother, Donna Sulker, who was present at an AFC news conference, recalled that a prosecutor had told her at the court during the Preliminary Inquiry that a third policeman should have been arraigned but she eventually learnt that he could not have been found. “One day, I decided to ask him (prosecutor) what become of the third policeman. He said (police from) Brickdam went to the man’s house one time and he did no know the reason why they are not going back because when they were there the first time the policeman was not at home so from that alone I see that justice is not there for me,” he said.
She added that the prosecutor for the case was eventually changed.
A sobbing Sulker still appealed for justice after going to court for several months during the preliminary inquiry. “It’s hard. I mean I attend court every time there is court. There are many times that I sit and listened and eye water came to my eyes because I realise and I see that justice is not there regardless of what the former Commissioner came to my home and told me. I realise that was just a bluff,” she said.
The AFC queried how was it possible for the police force, which was in possession of its own ballistic report, not prosecute the police officer who shot and killed Belgrave who had been ‘liming’ with his friends on the eve of his birthday.
That party suggested that the police force prosecuted two of its officers for a crime they were aware they could not have committed.
An immediate independent investigation, the AFC said, should also focus on the basis on which the police force commenced and or continued prosecution of charges of persons for the offence of manslaughter when they were in possession of information that they were not the shooters of Belgrave. The AFC said the investigation should focus on the the basis on which the alleged shooter of the young man, based on the ballistic reports, was not apprehended and charged for his unlawful death and the basis on which the force determines who must be prosecuted for criminal offences and whether the persons charged with this responsibility are legally trained and qualified to make determinations of the issue of the institution and prosecution of charges.