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Trial of Kareem Martinez to have limited court attendance; Commissioner of Police says “we have done our part”

Posted: Thursday, January 26, 2023. 9:01 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: The trial of police officer Kareem Martinez, charged with manslaughter in the death of teenager Laddie Gillett, begins on Friday in the Supreme Court in Dangriga Town with limited courtroom attendance, according to the Opposition’s Guardian newspaper.

Presiding Justice Antoinette Moore has instructed that five family members from each side, prosecution, and defense, will be allowed inside the courtroom, with more permitted on the side of Gillett’s family if fewer than five persons appear for the accused Martinez.

There will also be a limit on members of the press inside the courtroom, and only notepads will be allowed for note-taking – no recording devices.

Martinez is accused of killing Gillett, 14, on July 14, 2021, in Placencia village, when as a member of a patrol responding to reports of a burglary, he came upon two shadows at which he fired, taking them for suspects. It turned out that it was Gillett and a friend trying to make it home to beat the daily curfew. However, Martinez was charged with manslaughter rather than murder by the Police Department on the instruction of the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Today, Commissioner of Police Chester Williams told the press that with respect to investigating the case, “We have done our part in terms of conducting the investigation, giving the file to the DPP, and the matter is now before the courts.” That is as much as he would say since the matter is now being adjudicated.


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