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Thirty years in jail for Valentine Baptist, convicted on murder charge

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Posted: Friday, February 14, 2020. 2:29 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: Valentine Baptist, 30, who was convicted of the murder of Devin Parham, 19, was given a fixed sentence of 30 years imprisonment with the sentence to take effect from December 11, 2019, when he was found guilty.

Supreme Court Justice, Colin Williams, subtracted 3 years and 5 months from the sentence, which is the time Baptist has spent on remand. So Baptist will actually serve 26 years and 7 months.

Parham, who resided on Curassow Street, was shot and killed about 4 p.m. on July 6, 2016. He and his cousin, Victor Parham, were walking on Cemetery Road near to First Choice Pharmacy when Baptist rode by on a bicycle and opened fire. Victor ran, while Devin, who was the target, received multiple gunshot wounds. Shortly after the shooting, the police apprehended Baptist with a Glock 9 millimetre pistol that they saw him throw into a yard on Dean Street.

There were no eye witnesses to the shooting and Baptist, in the trial that was without a jury, was convicted purely on circumstantial evidence. Ballistic evidence showed that the expended shells that were found at the scene matched the gun Baptist had thrown in the yard.

Before he decided on the sentence, Justice Williams heard two impact statements from Devin Parham’s mother and his sister that were read by Senior Crown Counsel Shanice Lovell. The only mitigating factor was that Baptist, who was represented by Senior Counsel Simeon Sampson, did not give the police any trouble when he was apprehended.

 

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