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Senior Magistrate Rickie Burnett. (iWN file photo)
Senior Magistrate Rickie Burnett. (iWN file photo)
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Senior Magistrate Rickie Burnett made it clear on Tuesday that his focus is on justice and not statistics.

He made the point at the Kingstown Magistrate’s Court as the prosecution asked for an adjournment in a case, because the complainant had not been summoned.

Burnett said he has a different approach when the matter involves police officers as the complainant.

He said that in such cases, it is easy to dismiss charges because of the absence of police officers.

The magistrate, however, asked why should cases involving civilians as complainants and defendants be dismissed because police officers are absent.

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“Is that fair to the parties? Are the parties responsible for the police being absent?” Burnett reasoned.

The senior magistrate said those are things that he addresses his mind to when presiding.

He said that is why a case might sometimes be adjourned up to eight times before a trial.

He then granted an adjournment in the case, telling the defendant that the complainant was not in court because she had not been served.

“I am going to give you a chance and give her a chance as well,” he said and ordered the defendant to return to court on Aug. 16.

15 replies on “I focus on justice, not statistics – Senior Magistrate”

  1. Elma Gabriel says:

    Keep your focus Mr. ‘Justice’ Magistrate Burnett; we need more of your scruples within the leadership of our Dear Land of St.Vincent and the Grenadines.
    “Someone may ask, ‘How is justice greater than all the other virtues?’ The other virtues gratify the one who possesses them; justice does not give pleasure to the one possessing it, but instead pleases others”.

  2. Vincy Lawyer says:

    One of the greatest definitions of a GREAT MAN.

    Your guidance is unmatched, your support appreciated and your values are unquestioned.

    1. LOL…….are you saying hes perfect ???…….I question a lot of his decision making , most recently setting a return date on an $80 charge of which the defendant spent three months in prison . all mainly because of the inefficient and incompetent court system . ONLY God is great !!!

      1. Joshua Richardson. says:

        No one has indicated Perfection in relation to Senior Magistrate Burnett. Al, you are a perfect example of a Stone Caster.

      2. Vincy Lawyer says:

        It will be blasphemous for me and anyone to compare man to God.

        No one is perfect and my statement was not to be construed as making the Honorable Magistrate Perfect. However, having been in the legal arena for a significant period of time, I am pleased with the work of the Magistrate. That does not mean that all his decisions will not be subject to appeal or public scrutiny.

        As it relates to that $80 charge, if you knew law, the Magistrate could not just dismiss the case. It wasnt his matter to dispense with in the first place. Learn the rules, protocol and structures of court systems.

    2. who said he should dismiss the case ???……..dismissing and crediting time served is two big difference . He has broad discretion in his powers and clearly stated the obvious in the wrong that was done by being on remand for three whole months furthermore the offender didnt have legal representation so the magistrate have a duty to correct a wrong in the best of public interest . …….but you wont see nothing wrong with his decision to bring back the offender on this petty offense because according to you he is ” unquestionable ” and ” unmatched” ……..sounds like perfect to me Mr. Richardson !!

      1. Vincy Lawyer says:

        He could do neither actions. The case was infront of his for procedural reasons. It was not his case to address in any of the manner you’re describing.

        The case wasnt transferred to him. All he could have legally done is what he did. Truth be told, his opinion doesn’t even matter. Its for the district Magistrate to address.

        What’s with you and this perfection? Surely not the level headed Al, I have come to agree with via this platform.

      2. okay Vincy Lawyer …..your point is NOW understood because of clarity in your explanation and obviously additional information that you are privy that was not disclosed in this article .

        For the record I do like and believe this Magistrate means good and may sometimes make justifiable and fair decisions based on the law and his knowledge …..but i do believe your words and descriptions or titles of him may have went a little too far and stepped over bound

      3. Vincy Lawyer says:

        I had no personal information. I used common sense based on the Magistrate’s own explanation.

        He was clear as to why he had no locus standi in the matter.

  3. Mr Burnett I disagree with you. Because statistics most times helps to prove a case before a magistrate that believe in justice

    1. Elma Gabriel says:

      MR MAC, You said >“statistics MOST TIMES HELPS to prove a case”<. So nonetheless, ‘JUSTICE’ still takes precedent over statistics. As I reiterate; a principled Judge’s MAIN FOCUS must be on ‘JUSTICE’ and not statistic.

    2. Vincy Lawyer says:

      Justice means deciding a case based on its merit rather than on what the status quo may prefer. If you have been following this Magistrate’s tenure, you will see that he is quite difrerent than most.

      He is not afraid to rule differently than what is expected or to take action within his jurisdiction. This Mr. Mac is the difference between making rulings that will boost stats vs. achieving justice based on the facts of each case.

  4. I have been watching this guy for some time now and I am impressed with some of his decisions. I wonder what decisions he would have handed down if Ralph’s alleged rape case went before him. I want these judges to be appointed for several years, so no government can have total control over their decisions.
    This is needed in these lower courts and people may not be afraid to take a second look at CCJ. Independence and transparency will be greatly appreciated, so all Vincentians can have fair justice.
    The people will gladly vote for him to be on the CCJ, based on his performance in the lower court. I wonder if people are following my arguments. They are basic common sense decisions that the educated and uneducated can follow. Let the people select these judges, just like they selected two representatives for West Indies Federation.

  5. Joshua Richardson. says:

    Public Opinion should NEVER influence the course of Justice. Some Judges refrain from such.

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