DPP counters claim in police-involved father, son killing

THE Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) yesterday countered a claim by a man that charges are yet to be laid against two men accused of killing his brother and nephew 13 years ago.

Harold Malcolm, a former deputy spokesman on justice for the Jamaica Labour Party, had told a Jamaicans For Justice forum staged to advocate legislative reform to allow the Independent Commission of Investigations to initiate prosecutorial proceedings as part of its mandate, that his family was still mourning the killings of his 44-year-old brother Winston Malcolm, and 20-year-old nephew Winston Malcolm Jr at their home in an incident involving the police.

He said his family continues to suffer as charges are yet to be laid, despite the Coroner’s Court ruling in 2015 that the cops should be charged with murder.

Malcolm said he felt a decision could have been made in the case by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP).

However, DPP Paula Llewellyn, in a statement, said the public needed to know that a policeman has been charged for the shooting deaths of Winston Malcolm Sr and Winston Malcolm Jr.

“This is contrary to reports in the printed media,” she said, adding that her office has researched its records and wished to bring clarity to the process and the ODPP’s role in the matter.

“The matter was investigated by the Bureau of Special Ingestions (BSI),” the DPP pointed out.

“In 2009, after receiving outstanding documents from the investigators, the ODPP ruled that the matter be referred to the Special Coroner’s Court for it to be determined in an inquest whether any charges should be laid against any of the persons involved in the shooting incident which led to the deaths of Mr Winston Malcolm Sr and Mr Winston Malcolm Jr on the 21st day of December 2007.

“In 2015 the special coroner, after an enquiry with a jury, a verdict for Corporal Malica Reid and Constable Omar Simmonds to be charged for the offence of murder was returned. The coroner’s file was sent to the ODPP on 4th day of May 2018, after receipt of correspondence from the coroner apologising for the delayed delivery of the file to the office,” the DPP explained.

“On the 19th day of July 2019 the special coroner prepared a warrant for the apprehension of officers Malica Reid and Omar Simmonds. The warrant was executed by BSI on Mr Reid on the 30th day of July 2019. On that day Mr Reid was placed before the Home Circuit Court. Up to that time Mr Omar Simmonds was not located and is still at large,” Llewellyn stated.

She said that on July 30, 2019 her office “preferred a voluntary bill of indictment charging Malica Reid for two counts of murder pertaining to this matter in the Home Circuit Court”.

“Since then, Mr Reid’s case has been before the Home Circuit Court for plea and case management hearings, as mandated by the court, so as to ensure that the file is complete and that the ODPP has satisfied its disclosure obligations to the defence,” she said.

Reid, the DPP said, is scheduled to stand trial in this matter on October 10, 2022 in the Home Circuit Court.

“Please be advised that under the current dispensation, all date-fixing in the Home Circuit Courts are set by the Registrar of the Supreme Court,” the DPP added.

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