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Belize City man convicted of raping 15-year-old girl

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Posted: Wednesday, June 8, 2022. 9:24 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: Fitzharris Howard of Belize City will be sentenced on July 11 after being convicted today of rape of a minor, 15, in 2018.

Supreme Court Justice Ricardo O’Neal Sandcroft heard Howard’s case which began on May 23 without a jury in what is the first instance of a trial with a judge only for a sexual offence, following amendments to the law.

Howard was accused of raping the teenager in a deserted area off Chetumal Boulevard after giving her a drop in his pick-up around 8 p.m. on January 9, 2018, to deliver an item to a family member.

In his defence, Howard, represented by attorney Oscar Selgado, said he dropped off the victim for the delivery, then made a stop to take care of some business for himself, but denied having sex with the minor, saying he took her home.

Delivering his ruling, the judge said he did not find Howard’s version of events believable or truthful. Senior Crown Counsel Riis Cattouse and a co-counsel prosecuted.

Howard has been remanded pending sentencing to the Central Prison after previously being out on bail.

 

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