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Sandhill family awaits sentencing after conviction for dangerous harm

Posted: Tuesday, June 18, 2024. 6:13 pm CST.

By Breaking Belize News Staff: A Sandhill family—68-year-old Irene Budd, her daughter Ormencia Pou, 45, and 34-year-old Aaron Fuentes—remains behind bars after a mitigation plea was heard on Monday in the High Court by Justice Nigel Pilgrim.

The trio was convicted on April 23, 2024, by a jury for causing dangerous harm and has been in custody since then. Justice Pilgrim, who heard the mitigation pleas, deferred sentencing to July 5, 2024, citing the family’s lack of remorse.

Character witnesses, including Irene Budd’s brother Calbert Budd, spoke in favor of leniency, suggesting a fine or non-custodial sentence. Irene Budd, emotional in court, apologized to the victim and pleaded for a fine instead of further jail time.

The case dates back to a September 4, 2011, incident where Fuentes attacked Blair with a machete, severing his finger, followed by Budd and Pou joining in the assault, leading to Blair losing vision in his left eye. Blair testified, identifying the family as his attackers.

Despite the family’s pleas for mercy, they remain in prison until their final sentencing.

 

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