A man who said he maintained his silence even as he was charged with possession of an illegal firearm because he did not want to be an “informer”, broke that code in court and “informed” on the man he claimed was the owner of the gun.
However, Devon Ashton’s decision to break the code of silence did not save him from a jail term and he will join, in jail, for the next four years the man he claimed was the owner of the gun.
The development came last Monday as Ashton was being tried at the Serious Offences court in Kingstown on charges that on Aug. 21, 2017 at Rillan Hill, he had in his possession a .38 pistol, serial number 3624, and one round of .38 ammunition.
Police say that they nabbed Ashton along with Kimron Thomas, 25, and two other occupants of a vehicle, PH520, in Rillan Hill around 8 p.m. on the date in question.
On Aug. 23, Thomas was sentenced to five years in prison for possession of one black Luger 9 mm firearm, serial number S4M97, without a license at the Criminal Investigation Department general office in Kingstown on Aug. 21.
Ashton had pleaded not guilty to his charges when he was arranged on the same day at Thomas, at the Kingstown Magistrate’s Court.
The crown’s case was that Ashton had thrown the .38 pistol out of the vehicle as they stopped the vehicle.
At his trial last week Monday, Ashton denied throwing the gun from the vehicle and claimed that it was Thomas who had done so.
During cross-examination, Senior Prosecutor Adolphus Delplesche asked Ashton why he didn’t tell the police officers that Thomas had thrown the gun from the vehicle.
The accused man said that the police were “intimidating” and had struck one of the two other occupants of the vehicle with a flashlight.
He further said that police had charged him after keeping him in custody for 48 hours – the maximum period the law allows police to detain someone without charge.
Asked again why he didn’t tell police officer, as they prepared to charge him, that it was Thomas who had thrown the gun from the vehicle, Ashton told the court, “I don’t want to be no informer.”
“Informer to talk the truth?” Delplesche retorted.
“It has nothing to do with being an informer. It has to do with you being intimidated for something you did not do, according to you,” the prosecutor further said.
In his testimony, Thomas told the court that he did not throw a gun from the vehicle and did not know who did so.
Ashton and Thomas argued with each other after the adjournment of the court proceeding.
At one point, Thomas pointed out to Ashton that he is already serving a five-year sentence for gun and ammunition possession and asked why would he want to take another gun charge.
Ashton was found guilty of the charges two days later and would serve four and half years in prison.