The police officer who along with a civilian was charged in connection with a gun incident at Villa beach on Wednesday has been suspended from duty, pending the outcome of his trial.
Police Constable Zackroy John, 23, of Yambou, who has less than three years of service in the Royal St. Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force, appeared before Chief Magistrate Rachanne Browne on Monday.
At the hearing at the Serious Offences Court, John, along with Ismael Isaacs, a 30-year-old mechanic, of Diamond, pleaded not guilty to joint charges that on Dec. 6, at Villa:
they had in their possession one black Glock 22 pistol, serial number LNL 209 with intent to commit an offence; and
being armed with one Glock 22 pistol serial number LNL 209, they unlawfully threatened to discharge such a firearm at Danielle Webb, a 25-year-old resident of Diamond.
Counsel Ronald Marks appeared for Isaacs and also held for Kay Bacchus-Baptiste, John’s lawyer.
When the chief magistrate read the first charge to John, he appeared to have pleaded but she told him that she could not hear him.
“I cannot hear you. Could you hear me, Mr. John?” Browne asked John, who responded, “Yes, ma’am.”
“Answer, please,” the chief magistrate said and asked John to enter a plea.
He then pleaded not guilty.
Prosecutor acting Corporal of Police Shamrock Pierre told the court that he had no objection to the defendants’ bail but asked for sufficient surety and no contact with the virtual complainant.
Pierre said that because of the serious nature of the charges, he was asking that the court order the men to surrender their travel documents, post stop notices at all ports of entry and exit and impose reporting conditions of at least twice per week.
“The offences are serious, albeit allegations. Something has to be done in the state of St. Vincent and the Grenadines,” the chief magistrate said after hearing the prosecutor’s submission on bail.
“I will go with you with your no objection today,” Browne further said.
The chief magistrate set bail for each accused at EC$20,000 with one surety and ordered that the accused men have no contact with the virtual complainant.
“And for the avoidance of doubt, that will be Ms Danielle Webb of Diamond. And I believe you, Isaacs, are living in Diamond.”
Isaacs told the court that he lives “a good distance” from the virtual complainant.
“I want no contact,” the chief magistrate said.
She ordered both defendants to surrender their travel documents.
John was ordered to report to the Mesopotamia Police Station on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, while Isaacs would report on those days to the Stubbs Police Station.
The court ordered that stop notices be placed at port of entry and exit and that the men obtain the permission of the court should they wish to leave the country.
Both men were able to secure a surety by the end of Monday’s court sitting.